WIC Benefit Bump Must Be Extended Beyond March 31
Yesterday House Appropriations Chair Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) announced a bipartisan deal for a short-term funding extension until March 11, 2022. The continuing resolution does not include an extension of the WIC benefit bump, which remains in place until March 31. Extending the WIC benefit bump remains a priority for a full-year omnibus agreement. If the WIC benefit bump is not extended by March 31, WIC participants will see their fruit and vegetable benefit drop from $24-47/month back to $9-14.
USDA Updates School Meal Standards
Last week USDA announced that they would be implementing new nutrition standards for school lunches for the 2022-2023 and 2023-2024 school years, consistent with the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 and building on WIC’s success in driving children’s diets closer to DGA-recommended levels. USDA is expected to later release even longer-term nutrition standards for school meals, starting with the 2024-2025 academic year.
CA Legislature Passes Supplemental COVID Sick Leave
The CA Legislature has approved a bill that will require employers with more than 25 workers to provide up to 80 hours of paid sick time for employees who test positive for COVID-19, need to quarantine after exposure, or who need to care for a sick family member or child whose school is closed due to an outbreak. The law would be retroactive to Jan 1, 2022. It awaits the Governor's signature.
CWA’s 30th Conference and Trade Show - REGISTRATION OPEN!

The Power of Community, 30th Annual CWA Conference is May 9-12 We are happy to provide a virtual event with opportunity to engage with more national experts and also be accessible to more WIC staff and partners. We are mixing it up a bit by offering concurrent sessions for portions of the conference, which will give attendees the chance to gain 30+ CEUs. Registration is open, at the same rates as 2021, and we continue to offer a discounted rate for students, breastfeeding peer counselors, and retirees! Contact Grace at gharrelson@calwic.org for registration questions. 
Wellness and Black History Month

February is Black History Month, where we celebrate the achievements of Black Americans and honor the significant role and impact they have made on all facets of life and society throughout U.S. history. The theme for 2022 is Black Health and Wellness acknowledging the legacy of not only Black scholars and medical practitioners in Western medicine, but also other ways of knowing (e.g., birthworkers, doulas, midwives, naturopaths, herbalists, etc.) throughout the African Diaspora. Take some time to explore materials on Black Health & Wellness and learn more about conditions that affect African Americans and what to do about it. 
We Want Your Story!

Twice a year, CWA publishes the WIC Watch - a magazine for WIC staff, partner organizations, and any folks interested in all things WIC! We welcome your story submissions for our spring issue, the deadline is March 11th.
Local agency sharing at The Power of Community conference

Showcase and share the great work you have been doing at a virtual local agency conference sharing booth. You can share brochures/handouts(doc, ppt, or pdf), videos, images, website links, a description of your project. Don’t worry! We will upload all of your info…you just need to submit the materials to us via this form by April 27th. More details? Lena can help, lworkman@calwic.org
Unvaccinated People 23x More Likely to be Hospitalized Than Boosted
A new CDC study finds that with the Omicron variant circulating widely, adults in LA County who were unvaccinated against COVID-19 were 23x more likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19 than people who were fully vaccinated with a booster. Being up to date with your COVID-19 vaccinations is the best way to protect yourself and others from COVID-19. 

Wildfire Smoke Increasing Preterm Birth Rate in California
Between 2006 and 2012, wildfire smoke resulted in almost 7000 excess preterm births in California. Results of a recent study suggest that each additional day of exposure to wildfire smoke increases the risk of preterm birth.

Lifestyle More Important than Mom's BMI in Child Obesity
Researchers have found that a high Body Mass Index (BMI) of a mother before and during pregnancy is not a major cause of high BMI in their offspring -- indicating that childhood and teen obesity is more likely to be a result of lifestyle factors.

Walking - Workout or Meditation
Taking a daily walk is good for us - in a variety of ways! Here are some tips to get the most out of your walk, whether you're looking for some mindful tension relief or to get in a low-impact workout.
USBC - Call for Proposals
The U.S. Breastfeeding Committee launched the call for presentation proposals for the National Breastfeeding Conference & Convening (NBCC) to be hosted online June 7-9, 2022. The convening is designed to develop and strengthen the leadership capacity of the public health workforce, including representatives from health departments, federal agencies, research institutions, direct service organizations, breastfeeding coalitions, hospitals, and healthcare facilities to effectively protect, promote, and support breastfeeding at the national, state, local, and community levels. USBC is seeking presentations, roundtable discussion topics, and posters. Resources to support the proposal submission process and details about the conference learning arcs and objectives are on the USBC conference website. The deadline to submit a proposal is February 16, 2022.
Children With Special Needs
An estimated 13.3 million children, or 18% of all children in the U.S., have special health care needs. Children who are at risk for or have been diagnosed with a disability or other special need that may affect their development are best helped when they start receiving services as early as possible. Early Intervention (remedial or preventive) is designed to improve outcomes for children with developmental disabilities: to enhance development, provide family support, and maximize the child’s and family’s benefit to society. WIC Can Help families get critical services for their children with special health care needs.
Support CWA online!
As a nonprofit membership organization, CWA relies on the contributions of many organizations and individuals to help us achieve our mission. There are many ways to give of your time, talents, or resources to help CWA promote healthy families, strong communities, and bright futures! We appreciate all forms of support and invite you to join us!
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