News and Updates

 

Virginians: Take Action to Help Homeless Youth Access Shelter and Services

The Virginia legislature is on the verge of providing critically needed access to shelter and related services for thousands of youth experiencing homelessness who have no parents or guardians in their lives to turn to for help. The state Senate will soon consider HB717, a bill designed to provide unaccompanied homeless youth under the age of 18 the right to consent to their own housing, including emergency shelter, and related services. Learn more about this life-saving legislation and what you can do to get it over the finish line!

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Celebrating State Policy Successes on Youth Homelessness

As state legislative sessions come to a close throughout the country, SchoolHouse Connection and our partners are celebrating major state policy wins for children and youth experiencing homelessness. Every year, our team undertakes legislative advocacy campaigns with talented and passionate state and local advocates. In 2021, to date, we worked with advocates in California, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, North Dakota, Oregon, and Texas.

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The State of SHC’s 2021 State Policy Advocacy on Youth Homelessness

SHC’s state policy team is building on our 2020 successes with 2021 legislative advocacy campaigns in California, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, and Texas. Together with local teams and young people, we are focusing on minor consent and access to services, success in higher education, high school graduation, and employment.

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More State Policy Victories for Youth Experiencing Homelessness

SchoolHouse Connection convened a broad, inter-agency coalition in Missouri in late 2018, to identify state policy barriers to addressing youth homelessness. Youth experiencing homelessness, service providers, early childhood programs, public schools and other concerned advocates participated in our State Policy Institutes and joined our coalition. Together, we identified the policies in HB 1414 as key areas for reform. We designed the bill language, rallied support statewide, and were successful in having several bills introduced in 2019. This year, Kids Win Missouri took our bills back to the legislature, and moved them to passage with the support of lobbyists and advocates.

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First State Bills for 2019 Introduced, with More on the Way

Although state legislatures will not begin considering new legislation until early next year, SchoolHouse Connection and our state policy partners have been working feverishly for months to prepare. Last week, our first bill was introduced: a higher education bill in the Texas state legislature. Proposals in other states will tackle higher education, vital documents, minor consent, credit accrual, child care, employment, and transportation.

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