This bill would include assistance with the cost of diapers for infants and toddlers as among the necessary supportive services for parents involved in CalWORKs welfare-to-work activities.
AAP Positional Letter
April 14, 2017
The Honorable Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher
P.O. Box 942849
Sacramento, CA 94249-0080
Fax: (916) 319-2180
AB 480 (Gonzalez Fletcher): CalWORKs: welfare-to-work: necessary supportive services
AAP-CA Position: SUPPORT
Dear Assemblymember Gonzalez Fletcher:
The American Academy of Pediatrics, California (AAP-CA), representing the 5,000 board-certified pediatrician members of all four California AAP regional chapters statewide, strongly supports your proposed legislation AB 480 (Gonzalez Fletcher). This bill would include assistance with the cost of diapers for infants and toddlers as among the necessary supportive services for parents involved in CalWORKs welfare-to-work activities.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, 30% of mothers report struggling to afford diapers for their infants, with numbers even higher among Latino and African-American communities. Low-income parents in school or struggling with employment security are especially impacted by diaper costs since none of the existing social assistance programs for food and health provide specific support for families in need of diapers. An insufficient supply of diapers can result in a parent changing their child’s diaper less often than is healthy for the child. Painful diaper rash, skin infections, blisters and urinary tract infections are common outcomes leading to a doctor’s office or emergency department visit that can be costly for these families and the state, not to mention uncomfortable or even dangerous for the child.
AB 480 (Gonzalez Fletcher) would help children of low-income families avoid these easily preventable medical issues by assuring that CalWORKs recipients are able to afford diapers for their infants and toddlers. This would reduce unnecessary emergency room visits while helping low-income California families provide for their children.
California pediatricians strongly support AB 480 (Gonzalez Fletcher). We thank you for your public service and leadership on behalf of the health and well-being of children, youth, and families in California.
Nancy Graff, M.D., Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics
State Government Affairs Committee, American Academy of Pediatrics, California
CC: Kris Calvin, CEO; AAP-CA Leadership; Lydia Bourne