Attachment to News Release
Speaking with One Voice for Children - The Florida Agenda

Florida Association of Healthy
Start Coalitions
Florida Children's Forum
Florida Developmental Disabilities Council
Florida Partnership for School Readiness
The Lawton Chiles Foundation
United Way of Florida/
  Success By 6 Partnership

Center for Florida's Children
Children's Home Society
Commission on Responsible Fatherhood
Communities in Schools of Florida
Early Childhood Association of Florida
Florida ARF
Florida Children's Campaign
Florida Head Start Association
Florida Interagency Council for
  Infants & Toddlers
Florida Pediatric Society
Florida PTA
Florida School-Age Child Care
Florida State Foster Adoptive Parent
Friends of Children, Inc.
Healthy Families Florida
Ounce of Prevention Fund of Florida
Pinellas County Head Start/Early
  Head Start
Southeast Evaluation Association
The Early Childhood Initiative Foundation
The Family Source of Florida
The Lawton and Rhea Chiles Center for
  Healthy Mothers and Babies
The Mary Brogan Museum of Arts
  & Sciences
The Policy Group for Florida's Families
  and Children
VSA Arts of Florida

Kaplan Companies, Inc.

Children's Week 2002
c/o United Way of Florida
307-B E.7th Avenue
Tallahassee, FL 32303
Phone 850-488-8276
Fax 850-681-9137

Speaking with One Voice for Children -
The Florida Agenda

The well-being of children and families is the highest priority in Florida and public policies will be established to be consistent in their support of this priority. The key indicators of well-being are:
  • All of Florida's children are healthy, safe and ready to learn at every age.
  • All of Florida's families are stable, nurturing and economically self-sufficient.
  • All of Florida's communities are supportive of families raising children.
Healthy Children. The benefits of beginning and living a healthy life are enormous and long lasting. The consequences of beginning life unhealthy can be lifelong and costly. To safeguard our health, we need accessible and affordable health care. Particularly important is a healthy start prenatally and from birth. Children should have the supports and services necessary to live full, healthy and productive lives.

Children Safe in their Families and Communities. The quality of life in our communities depends upon feeling and being safe in our communities. Children are among our most vulnerable citizens. They require protection and nurturing to help them grow up to become responsible, law-abiding and nurturing adults.

Children Ready to Learn and Succeed in School. Quality early education and care beginning in the infancy period should be affordable and accessible for all children. It is the first and crucial step in creating a well-educated work force and citizenry to help build better lives for Florida's families and a prosperous economy for Florida as a whole. Our best investment is to capitalize on the capacity for young children to learn in the early years and to teach our children how to live and work in our rapidly growing and complex world. At the outset, all children should enter school ready to succeed and continue to succeed as they grow.

Stable and Nurturing Families. Florida reflects a society comprised of four generations - children, parents, grandparents and super-elder great-grandparents. For all Floridians to participate fully in society, families need to thrive - children need to be able to grow to full potential and elders need to feel secure and believe they are needed.

Economically Self-Sufficient Families. Low-income and/or single parent families, some with inadequate or unsafe housing, face extraordinary challenges in providing the basic necessities of life. Such families are vulnerable to an array of social and economic challenges: unemployment, crime, teenage pregnancy, lack of an adequate education and the need for public assistance. Eliminating poverty is an initiative likely to strengthen our communities in many ways, not just economically.

Supportive Communities. For Florida's communities to thrive and for children to grow up to become contributing adults who take their personal and community responsibilities seriously, a stable neighborhood environment that nurtures and supports the four generations represented in our communities is essential.

The key evidence-based policies and practices that are required to achieve well-being are:
  • All children and families in Florida have access to health care.
  • All children and families in Florida have access to home-visiting services.
  • All children and families in Florida have access to affordable, quality early education and care services.
  • All children and families in Florida have access to integrated health, economic and family support services.
  • All communities in Florida, in partnership with the state are supportive and provide for a comprehensive, integrated continuum of natural, primary and specialized supports and services that are available to all children and families.
  • All public and private employers in Florida promote family-friendly employment practices and a livable wage for all people who work.
The Policy Group Logo The Florida Agenda was developed by The Policy Group for Florida's Families and Children. The vision of The Policy Group for Florida's Families & Children is that, together, we will ensure that a generation of young people grow up to be responsible adults - ready, willing and able to contribute to self, to family and to their community. For more information about the agenda and the work of The Policy Group, consult their website at

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