- Youth to Call on Lawmakers to Address State’s 50th Ranking in Child Well-Being
ALBUQUERQUE—This year’s New Mexico KIDS COUNT Data Book, which is set for release on the first day of the legislative session, will address the state’s fall to 50th in the nation in child well-being. A new section in the annual report tracks the status, over time, of the 16 indicators used in the national KIDS COUNT Data Book, in which New Mexico was ranked dead last in 2013. This new section also ranks New Mexico counties on the indicators.
The NM KIDS COUNT Data Book will be released as part of Celebrating Children and Youth Day at the Capitol. NM Voices will also launch their NM KIDS are COUNTing on Us Campaign, asking people to become Citizen Co-Sponsors of their NM KIDS are COUNTing on Us Policy Agenda in an effort to press lawmakers into action to improve child well-being.
Celebrating Children and Youth Day is sponsored by ten child- and youth-serving organizations. Activities sponsored by other groups will include: Youth will give the annual “State of the Children and Youth” address; 50 children will be on hand, each holding a drawing or statement illustrating why they think New Mexico has fallen to 50th in child well-being; four dozen pre-K students from Rio Rancho will sing; and youth will deliver biscochitos with the message “Don’t Sugarcoat It—We’re 50th” to members of the Legislature.
- Veronica C. García, Ed.D., Executive Director, NM Voices for Children
- Denisse Alvarez, age 17, SouthWest Organizing Project
- Amanda Gallegos, age 15, SouthWest Organizing Project
- Idalia Martinez, age 19, NM Forum for Youth in Community
- Jordan Davila (high school student), YDI Elev8 NM
Celebrating Children and Youth Day sponsors:
- Center for Civic Policy
- NM Alliance for School-Based Health Care
- NM Association for the Education of Young Children
- NM Forum for Youth in Community
- NM Voices for Children
- NM Youth Alliance
- Partners for Community Action
- YDI-Elev8 NM
- Youth Development, Inc.
- SouthWest Organizing Project