June 5, 2020
Earlier this week, APHSA released a statement addressing the recent events across the country. As we grieve as a nation, we must confront that the very systems we helped build and operate have enabled, and far too often exacerbated, structural inequities that trace race and income lines. Together, we must bridge this untenable divide by confronting racism and racial disparities. Read the full statement here.
Legislative Updates
APHSA Submits Letter to Congress
This week, APHSA submitted a letter to Congress highlighting specific policies Congress should adopt to invest in human services as a down payment on our nation’s economic recovery. The recommendations cover policy issues focused on human services budgets, employment and economic assistance services, nutrition supports, and child welfare.

CBO Reports on HEROES Act Score and COVID-19 Economic Impact
On June 1, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) issued “CBO Estimate for HR 6800, the HEROES Act,” estimating the costs of the legislation passed by the House in early May to be $3.4 trillion over a decade.

The CBO also issued a separate report, “Comparison of CBO’s May 2020 Interim Projections of Gross Domestic Product and Its January 2020 Baseline Projections,” updating economic projections from January, based on the economic effects of COVID-19. The CBO estimates that over 10 years the economy will be reduced by nearly $16 trillion from previous projections.

Child and Family Well-Being
ACF Guidance on Extended Foster Care During COVID-19
A new letter from the Children’s Bureau within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) describes how title IV-E agencies can utilize enhanced foster care programs during the COVID-19 pandemic to support youth who have left or may leave foster care. The guidance includes information on promoting re-entry of youth into extended care, utilizing all placement options, extending care and services to youth from other states, addressing the needs of pregnant and parenting youth, and broad outreach to all 18-21 year olds.

GAO Report on Medicaid Program Administration Challenges
In interviews with the U.S. Government Accountability Office ( GAO), a majority of Medicaid officials from the 50 states and the District of Columbia (hereafter, states) identified federal Medicaid policies—including laws, regulations, and procedures—in four program areas that posed a significant or moderate challenge to effective program administration.
DOJ Releases Guidance on COVID-19 and State Juvenile Detention and Correctional Facilities
In recently released guidance, the Department of Justice (DOJ) urges facilities to stay vigilant in supervising youth and their mental health during the public health emergency. The guidance provides four considerations for states to strike a balance between the health risks within detention and correctional facilities and the potential dangers posed by accelerated release schedules.   

Employment and Economic Well-Being
OSHA and CDC Release Guidelines on Agricultural Worker Safety During Pandemic
On Tuesday, the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) with and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) issued guidance on keeping agricultural workers safe during the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. Guidance instructs owners and operators to take steps such as screening workers for symptoms, using touch free equipment and devices when possible, and encouraging workers to wear face coverings.

FNS Releases TEFAP State Allocations from CARES Act
The Coronavirus, Aid, Relief, and Economic Stimulus (CARES) Act appropriated an additional $447,000,000 for The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP). The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) recently released the specific amount allocated to each state and territory, ranging from $262,055 for the North Mariana Islands to $54,073,879 for California.

The Office of Family Assistance (OFA) released two abstracts for demonstration programs through the Health Professionals Opportunity Grants (HPOG). The demonstration programs include the Northeast Louisiana Professional Healthcare Opportunities—Careers and Support Project II (PHOCAS-II), and the Healthcare Workforce for the Future in King County, WA. Each program established a portion of its target population as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) recipients.

From Our APHSA Partners
U.S. Census Bureau Extends Deadline
The U.S. Census Bureau recently extended the deadline to reply to the 2020 census by three months, from Friday, July 31 to Saturday, October 31, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

M ore than $675 billion in federal funds are distributed each year to support vital programs that help shape local health care, housing, education, transportation, employment, and public policy. As leaders in your community, we encourage you to urge every household to complete the census. The Census Bureau has a wealth of   m aterials and resources to make your outreach simple and many can still be implemented with social distancing in mind.

NAMD Blog Post: Early Insights from Medicaid Directors: What Is the Impact of COVID-19 on Medicaid Utilization?
COVID-19 is impacting the U.S. health care system in unprecedented and complex ways. Some segments of the health system are responding to a surge of patients with COVID-19 and experiencing higher costs. Other swaths of the health care system are seeing a different impact: fewer patients seeking care due to social distancing and limits on elective procedures. This blog explores early insights from Medicaid leaders on health care utilization during COVID-19 and lays out the questions Medicaid directors are still trying to answer.

Upcoming Webinars
APHSA Webinar - Expanding Social Services: Using Data to Enhance Benefit Processing During the COVID-19 Crisis
State agencies need to quickly and accurately identify individuals and families that are being impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in order to ensure well-being despite the health crisis. Join experts from Equifax, Change & Innovation Agency, the Tennessee Department of Human Services, and APHSA to learn how to utilize data, technology, and available federal funds to best support your community during this challenging time.
Thursday, June 11, 2:00-3:00 PM EST
Boosting Upward Mobility: Metrics to Inform Local Action
Join the Urban Institute for a discussion about how evidence-informed metrics can help communities and local decisionmakers catalyze and prioritize efforts to boost upward mobility. They will share a preliminary set of metrics that build on the work of the U.S. Partnership on Mobility from Poverty and reflect its expansive definition of mobility, which incorporates economic success, power and autonomy, and being valued in one’s community. Speakers will share lessons from research and practice about the potential of metrics to shape strategies that improve outcomes for people and communities.

Tuesday, June 16, 2:00-3:00 PM EST
Using Data to Identify Changes in Child Welfare Referrals and Screening in the Era of COVID-19
Join Mathematica along with the Centre for Social Data Analytics (CSDA) and the Children’s Data Network, who are convening a group of experts and staff of county child welfare agencies using data from predictive risk models to understand recent changes in the reporting and screening of child abuse and neglect. Learn more about how three counties are using data and predictive risk models to understand the changing child welfare landscape and inform the way they serve children and families in an unprecedented public health crisis.

Thursday, June 16, 3:00-4:00 PM EST
2Gen COVID-19 Webinar Series: Building a Response for the Future
Join the Aspen Institute for their last webinar in a series to learn more about what we can do today to build a stronger, equitable future for children and the adults in their lives.

Tuesday, June 30, 3:00-4:00 PM EST
Conference Updates
Reminder: We continue working to ensure our members and partners have meaningful ways to connect with each other throughout the year despite our uncertain times. Taking all factors into consideration, including the health and well-being of everyone, stay-at-home orders and mass gathering restrictions across the nation, we have decided to move both the National Staff Development and Training Association ( NSDTA ) conference and the American Association of Health and Human Services Attorneys ( AAHHSA ) conference to  virtual events. More details will be forthcoming.

As we continue to plan for the IT Solutions for Human Services ( ISM ) conference, we are carefully weighing all options, including opportunities in which we would incorporate content from the fall conferences we are unable to hold this year. These recently  cancelled  conferences include: The National Association for Program Information and Performance Measurement ( NAPIPM ) Education Conference and the American Association of SNAP Directors ( AASD ) / National Association of State TANF Administrators ( NASTA ) Education Conference. We will provide more details on the status of this event as we continue to explore all possible avenues while also closely monitoring public health guidance. Read our full message regarding fall events  here .
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.