September 24, 2021
Greetings!
Congratulations NEICE! We're excited to share that the National Electronic Interstate Compact Enterprise has won a 2021 Best of NIEM Award, for Best Implementation of NIEM, showcasing exceptional examples of NIEM’s implementation. NEICE uses the National Information Exchange Model Standards to translate data moving between 43 states for the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children. Read Press Release here and learn about the Best of NIEM Awards here.
Join our team! APHSA is seeking an Associate Director to manage the day-to-day work of the National Electronic Interstate Compact Enterprise (NEICE) project, which is operated by APHSA on behalf of the Association of Administrators of the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children. Apply now or share with interested parties in your network.
It's not too late to register either in-person or virtually for the Information Technology Solutions Management for Human Services (ISM) Conference, September 26-29 in Cincinnati, OH. It's an easy drive from neighboring states, or attend virtually from home! Register here.
Legislative Updates
House Passes Continuing Resolution, Authorizes Refugee Assistance; Uncertainty Remains in the Senate

On Wednesday, the House passed the Extending Government Funding and Delivering Emergency Assistance Act, which would extend federal appropriations at current levels through December 3. The bill would additionally extend funding for the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), appropriate an additional $1.7 billion to the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) for resettlement and support services for Afghan arrivals and refugees, and ensure all recent Afghan parolees and their families – subject to completion of a background check – qualify for resettlement assistance, entitlement programs, and child welfare services. The bill now moves to the Senate, where its path forward remains unclear due to the inclusion of a provision raising the federal debt limit.

House Budget Reconciliation Package Coming into Full Frame, Though Next Steps Remain Unclear

House committees have completed mark-ups of their components of the omnibus budget reconciliation package, which cover a broad range of investments in human services and related systems of support. APHSA has flagged below key provisions that impact human services agencies. Final mark-ups from Budget and Rules committees are planned for this weekend, clearing the path for votes on both the human infrastructure and the bipartisan traditional infrastructure packages. If approved, the bill will then move to the Senate where it will be subject to “Byrd rule” limitations that restrict bill text to matters that are budgetary in nature.

Key Human Services Provisions from Committee Drafts:
Universal Preschool (Ed & Labor – page 234)
Summer EBT (Ed & Labor – page 272)
Child and Family Well-Being
Child Tax Credit Resources

There is still time for families to sign up for advance Child Tax Credit (CTC) payments. Families can sign up to receive monthly payments using the simple tool for non-filers through November 15, 2021. Treasury data reveal that at least 2.3 million families could be missing out on these payments. It is essential that the benefit reaches eligible individuals who do not normally file income taxes and therefore may not automatically be receiving the credit. Human services agencies serve many of these families and are well positioned to deploy resources on the ground to assist eligible individuals.

Non-filer portal
Navigator Training recording for resources on connecting your community to the CTC
Sept. 27 CWLA Webinar: The Child Tax Credit (CTC) is a Child Welfare Issue, for child welfare stakeholders including foster parents, kinship caregivers, child welfare workforce, and child-serving organizations.
IRS Question & Answer Page
Oct. 1 APHSA Webinar: Tools and Tips for Quickly Connecting Families to the Expanded Child Tax Credit, featuring Speakers from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) & the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center.
HUD Awards Funding to Help End Youth Homelessness

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is awarding $142 million to build systems to end youth homelessness in 33 local communities and 11 rural communities. The funding, through the Youth Homelessness Demonstration Program (YHDP), will support building a wide range of housing programs including rapid rehousing, permanent supportive housing, transitional housing, and host homes.

Employment and Economic Well-Being
SNAP - Preparing for Reinstatement of Time Limit for ABAWDs

The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) released a memorandum on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) preparing for reinstatement of the time limit for Able-Bodied Adults without Dependents (ABAWDs). FNS
published guidance this week to help states prepare for the reinstatement of the time limit for ABAWDs once the temporary and partial suspension under the Family First Coronavirus Act (FFCRA) lapses. The memorandum provides guidance on resetting countable hours to zero, requesting waivers of the ABAWD time limit, and availability of discretionary exemptions.

FNS Shares Q&A on Oct. 1 SNAP Benefit Change

With the 15% temporary Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefit increase expiring at the end of September, and the increase to the Thrifty Food Plan taking place on October 1, the USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) created a Q&A document to help clarify what benefit changes should be expected. The document also addresses questions around Emergency Allotments and how they will affect any benefit change.

School Meal Waivers Authorized for SY 21-22

The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) announced nationwide flexibilities for school meal programs to continue operating safely. The nationwide waivers include non-congregate meal service, parent and guardian meal pick up, area eligibility requirements, service of meals at school sites during unanticipated school closures, and meal time requirements. Previous waivers that had already been authorized for the school year include the Seamless Summer Option, which allows schools to provide free meals to all students regardless of income.

USDA Releases The Road to Engagement: A Toolkit for SNAP E&T Programs

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has released a toolkit that details a systematic approach for employing human-centered design and behavioral science to identify and generate solutions to problems that may be limiting engagement and participation in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Education & Training programs. The Toolkit details four potential issue areas identified by MDRC and Seattle Jobs Initiative in their work with States participating in the SNAP to Skills project: first contact, service matching, handoffs throughout the process, and reverse referrals.

Partner Updates
State of the Field: Two-Generation Approaches to Family Well-Being

We were featured in Ascend Leadership's newly released State of the Field: Two-Generation Approaches to Family Well-Being, a seminal report which captures the incredible work of the two-generation (2Gen) movement and momentum for family well-being throughout the last 10 years. This report analyzes 2Gen accomplishments, presents eight breakthrough insights, and offers 28 recommendations to advance practice, policy, and systems change.
Check out our contribution with a quote from CEO Tracy Wareing Evans on page 15 as an example of 2Gen innovation and impact!

Upcoming Events
APHSA Webinar — Tools and Tips for Quickly Connecting Families to the Expanded Child Tax Credit

Join us for a 30-minute webinar panel with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center (TPC) for a discussion of how TPC’s data visualization map can inform a strategic approach to targeting Child Tax Credit outreach, and what Colorado is doing today to reach eligible families.

Friday, October 1, 3:00-3:30 PM EDT
APHSA Webinar — Partnering with State Associations to Develop Third-Party Providers: Spotlight on Alabama

Join us as we hear how the state of Alabama used a long-standing strategic partnership between the Alabama Network of Family Resource Centers (ANFRC) and the Alabama Department of Human Resources (DHR) to build a powerful network of employment and training services for individuals receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). With support and funding from the state legislature and governor’s office, and continued partnership with DHR, ANFRC helped Alabama’s Family Resource Centers to expand existing services to TANF customers and create new SNAP Education & Training programs providing career pathways and supportive services to individuals and families.

Tuesday, October 12, 4:00-5:00 PM EDT
SPARK 2021 Virtual Learning Experience
 
Designed by the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities and Council on Accreditation (Alliance-COA), SPARK 2021 is a three-day virtual learning experience that will activate the power of the social sector. Convene with leaders from across the human services ecosystem to create a unified, intrepid, just, and purposeful network so that all people can thrive.

October 12-14, 2021
Upcoming APHSA Conferences
Registration is now open for our upcoming conferences, listed below. Get rewarded for bringing your team! For In-person ISM attendance, APHSA is offering a $25 discount per registration if you bring three or more. For virtual attendance at ISM, NSDTA or AAHHSA, receive a $50 discount for five or more. Email aphsaconferences@aphsa.org to secure the registration discount code.
Information Technology Solutions Management for Human Services (ISM) Hybrid Conference
September 26-29 | Cincinnati, OH

Reconnect at the ISM Annual Conference & Expo which will convene in Cincinnati, OH, at the Duke Energy Convention Center OR virtually for their annual conference and expo. This event brings together agency leaders in technology, along with the private sector firms focused on providing solutions for health and human services agencies. The content presented will promote IT solutions and best practices that enhance the delivery of health and human services.
APHSA is putting the health, safety, and well-being of attendees first and foremost. APHSA will require proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test result (72 hours prior to arrival) to attend in-person. Please review the event Code of Conduct and FAQs or via our chatbot by scanning this QR code or texting “Hi” to 855-705-8296.
National Staff Development and Training Association (NSDTA) Conference
October 3-6

Connect with your colleagues virtually at the NSDTA Annual Education Conference. This conference brings together human services organizational development, staff development, and training professionals at the local, state, and federal levels. Join us virtually for the opportunity to share ideas, resources, and engage in robust sessions. We are focusing on forward-thinking ideas about instructional design, workforce development, evaluation and research, and much more!
American Association of Health and Human Services Attorneys (AAHHSA) Conference
October 17-20

Join your colleagues virtually at the AAHHSA Annual Education Conference. This conference is a comprehensive learning and networking experience for attorneys representing state and local government agencies that administer health and human services programs. Join us virtually for content focusing on the policies and practices that enhance human services programs’ delivery and quality – all while earning continuing legal education credits! In-person registration is now open.
APHSA Career Center - Post Your Open Positions Today

APHSA serves as a clearinghouse for job opportunities throughout the health and human services (H/HS) field. Employers reach a wide audience of candidates looking for careers in H/HS and job seekers will find a bevy of opportunities throughout the country.