Would, effective May 1, 2019, make a child receiving CalWORKs aid who is not pregnant or parenting a child and who attains a high school diploma or its equivalent eligible to receive a one-time education support payment of $500. By increasing the administrative duties of counties administering the CalWORKs program, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
AAP Positional Letter
April 2, 2018
The Honorable Blanca Rubio, Chair
Assembly Human Services Committee
1020 N Street, Room 124
Sacramento, California 95814
RE: AB 2637 (O’Donnell): CalWORKs: aid amounts: education support payments
AAP-CA Position: Support
Dear Chair Rubio:
The American Academy of Pediatrics, California (AAP-CA), representing over 5,000 California pediatricians, strongly supports proposed legislation AB 2637 (O’Donnell), which would make children receiving CalWORKs aid, who are not pregnant or parenting a child and who attain a high school diploma or its equivalent, eligible to receive a one-time education support payment of $500.
High school graduation rates and postsecondary educational entry rates are lower for children of low-income California families, which can have lifelong negative consequences on a person’s health and wellbeing. Often, children feel pressured to leave high school to work, or to postpone postsecondary education or training, because of an immediate need for funds to support themselves or their families. Often, the amount of money needed may be quite low, but it is simply not possible for many low-income youth to take the same short-term financial risks as their higher-income classmates, which leaves them disadvantaged in the long term.
AB 2637 (O’Donnell) would help low-income youth who complete their high school degrees to pursue additional training or education before entering the full-time workforce by offering them a $500 one-time stipend, which not only eases whatever financial burdens they might be under, but also serves as an incentive to those who are questioning whether or not to abandon their high school education.
Pediatrician members of AAP California Chapters 1, 2, 3 and 4 across the state strongly support proposed legislation AB 2637 (O’Donnell) and respectfully urge an AYE vote. Thank you for your public service and leadership on behalf of the health and wellbeing of children, youth, and families in California.
Chief Executive Officer, American Academy of Pediatrics, California
cc: Honorable Patrick O’Donnell, author
Members of the Assembly Human Services Committee
AAP-CA Leadership; Lobbyist Lydia Bourne