A Message from DCYF Secretary Ross Hunter

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DCYF Secretary Ross Hunter

March 1, 2022 Issue

Recent News

Town Halls for Transition and Independent Living Program Redesign

Youth Residents Celebrate Black History Month

Recent Reports

A Snapshot of Current Juvenile Rehabilitation Youth: Substance Use Disorder & Treatment Needs

Washington State Part C State Systemic Improvement Plan, Phase III, Year 6

Upcoming Events 

Transition Planning and Independent Living Program Redesign Town Hall: Tuesday, March 1, from 5 to 7 p.m.

Fair Start for Kids Act Temporary Licensing Subcommittee Meeting: Wednesday, March 16, from 9 a.m. to noon

Community Transition Services Stakeholder Group Meeting: Thursday, March 17, from 9 a.m. to noon

Parent Advisory Group Meeting: Wednesday, March 23, from 7 to 9 p.m.

For more information, registration links, or questions about these events, please contact DCYF Community Engagement.

Collage of book covers.

Secretary Hunter's Book Recommendations

February was Black History Month. As a late-stage boomer, I got almost none of this history in school, despite growing up in a majority Black city (Philadelphia) and a big academic focus on American History in my youth. I’ve tried to make up for this appalling lack of knowledge in the past few years by reading some excellent writing, and I’d like to pass some of these recommendations on to all of you. I did not read these all in one month or even a single year. All are incredibly valuable.

It’s our responsibility as human beings in the world to help heal the world. For us at the Washington State Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF), it’s a core part of our agency mission. Race has been used to divide us in America for hundreds of years. Understanding what happened is why we read history, and good history gets deep into the underlying causes of what happened. These are great history books.

Read the full article. 

A mother in military uniform sits with her two young children.

Military Child Care Fee Assistance Program Available in Washington

DCYF is excited to announce that we are partnering with the Department of Defense (DOD) in the expansion of the military child care fee assistance program Military Child Care in Your Neighborhood (MCCYN).

MCCYN provides fee assistance for families of Active Duty personnel, DOD Neighborhood civilians, and Guard and Reserve service members who are unable to access on-installation child care. Previously, only a limited number of child care providers were eligible to participate in the MCCYN program. Through this expansion, called MCCYN-PLUS, we will provide military families greater access to high-quality early care and education experiences for their children.

Read more.

Purple image with the text "2022 Unsung Heroes, Honoring Outstanding Parents and Primary Caregivers"

Honoring Washington’s Unsung Heroes During Parent Recognition Month

Gov. Inslee proclaimed February as Parent Recognition Month to acknowledge the powerful work parents do every day. Each year through the Unsung Heroes campaign, DCYF recognizes 28 parents and caregivers in Washington for the roles they take with their families, schools, and communities, and for their demonstration of the protective factors known to help reduce child abuse and neglect. As Parent Recognition Month comes to an end, we acknowledge that the work of parents, guardians, and caregivers continues. Their hard work helps shape their communities and can direct programs and policies that impact them.

To see the 2022 Unsung Heroes and hear their stories, watch these videos: 2022 Unsung Heroes Video Part 1 | 2022 Unsung Heroes Video Part 2. Their written stories are available on DCYF’s Facebook page.

Children running and playing outdoors.

Fair Start for Kids Newsletter Launch

The Fair Start for Kids Act, passed by the Washington State Legislature in 2021, is a historic $1.1 billion investment to expand access to child care, cap rates, build the child care workforce, and help strengthen the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

This month, DCYF will launch a monthly newsletter showcasing the Fair Start for Kids Act and its positive impacts on making quality child care more affordable for Washington families.

Subscribe to receive the Fair Start for Kids monthly newsletter.