AB 227 (Mayes) would create CalWORKs Educational Opportunity and Attainment Program, to provide CalWORKs recipients with a monthly education incentive grant of $100 for attainment of a high school diploma or its equivalent, $200 for attainment of an associate’s degree or career technical education program, or $300 for attainment of bachelor’s degree, if completed while receiving CalWORKs assistance.
AAP Positional Letter
March 10, 2017
The Honorable Chad Mayes
Sacramento, CA 94249
Fax: (916) 319-2142
RE: AB 227 (Mayes): CalWORKs: Education Incentives
AAP-CA Position: Support
Dear Assemblymember Mayes:
I am writing on behalf of the American Academy of Pediatrics, California (AAP-CA), representing over 5,000 California pediatricians, to let you know that we strongly support your proposed legislation AB 227 (Mayes). This bill would create the CalWORKs Educational Opportunity and Attainment Program, in order to provide CalWORKs recipients with monthly education incentive grants for the completion of educational programs.
It is extremely difficult to find suitable employment without a high school diploma or higher. However, it is often difficult for low-income Californians to achieve an education precisely because doing so requires money, whether in the form of tuition, transportation, or child care. Even finding the time to pursue education is costly, as many low-income Californians must work long hours to make ends meet. This has the effect of trapping them in poverty, as their low-paying jobs do not allow them to pursue the education needed to find better employment.
AB 227 (Mayes) would help low-income Californians finance their educations by providing grants to CalWORKs recipients who have completed degrees. This would not only incentivize educational achievement, but would also help to pay off student loans or replenish savings accounts depleted during their course of their studies. California children would in turn benefit from having parents who are both more financially stable and qualified for higher-paying employment that helps them keep their families housed, fed, and healthy.
Pediatricians across the state support AB 227 (Mayes). We thank you for your leadership on behalf of the health and well-being of children, youth, and families in California.
Zoey Goore, M.D., M.P.H., Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics
Executive Board Member, American Academy of Pediatrics, California
CC: Kris Calvin, CEO; AAP-CA Leadership; Lydia Bourne