D. D'Auteuil Jr.: Programs need support

As early as this week, the Legislature may consider a supplemental budget that threatens to hurt children. Programs such as Head Start, the Maine Families Home Visitation Program and the Child Care and Development Fund that promote children’s health, facilitate their success and strengthen their development are on the chopping block.

Legislators should reject any attempts to undermine these programs.

Scientific and economic research demonstrates that investments in early childhood produce great dividends. Not only is that good for children, it is essential for the long-term well-being of Maine’s economy. Indeed, such investments promote a more productive work force and reduce the need for more expensive services later.

The damage caused by these cuts, however, won’t just come in the future. Cutting these programs will also cause problems right now.

Head Start and Child Care and Development Fund cuts mean some parents will be forced to quit their jobs or place their children in unsafe situations. The Home Visitation Program cuts threaten to undermine efforts to reduce child abuse and will make it more difficult for some children to get a good start in life.

These programs are among the best investments we can make as a state. I urge the Legislature to continue to support early care and education programs. Our children, communities and economy depend upon it.

Dan D’Auteuil Jr., Lewiston

Board chairman, United Way of Androscoggin County

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Comments

ERNEST LABBE's picture

With a due respect

With a due respect how qbout we have a program that teaches all children and adults that having children is a huge responsibility. Not to be taken lightly. It is an eighteen to twenty something year commitment. This training needs to be given to both males and females.

Jason Theriault's picture

Why?

You don't think people know that already?

People make mistakes. The problem with saying "Then they should be responsible for it" is that your not just punishing the parent. I wouldn't have a problem with that. Your punishing the kid. This kid is already going to face all sorts of disadvantages. Yes, this can force the kids to be self starters, like LePage. It can also teach them to do anything to survive, and turn to a life of crime. Had LePage not gotten help from the Snowe's to get into college, who knows how he would have turned out.

Kids are an investment. The more productive they turn out to be, the more beneficial to the state they are. Anything you can do to boost this will pay itself back in higher wages and a more competitive labor market.

DONALD FERLAND's picture

Haven't our children lost

Haven't our children lost enough already? It is time to start looking elsewhere to save money and stop taking from the children.

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