Education & Human Services

October 2, 2018 by Seth DiStefano
Cutting Food Assistance Won’t Help West Virginia

Despite the rosy rhetoric, everything is not okay in West Virginia. Unemployment remains stubbornly high compared to the rest of the country, and, even as Appalachian counties overall seem to be on the rebound, West Virginia is not so lucky. We have seen a net increase in economic insecurity,with multiple counties heading in the wrong…

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September 25, 2018 by Tara Martinez
So the Hungry Can Eat

Former West Virginia Center on Budget and Policy Outreach Coordinator and current Manna Meal Inc. Executive Director Tara Martinez penned this guest blog piece. Martinez brings a provider perspective that urges Congress to reject cuts to food assistance and pass the Senate Farm Bill. The House version - which dramatically cuts food assistance - and the Senate version - which…

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September 11, 2018 by WVCBP
West Virginia Needs the Senate Farm Bill

Among our West Virginia hills, it's likely the most common questions heard upon entering someone's home are: "are you hungry?" and "would you like something to eat." Food bonds us and fuels us. It's engrained in our culture - from garden canning to church meals - making sure our neighbors have enough to eat is…

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September 4, 2018 by WVCBP
My Students Can’t Afford Cuts to Nutrition Assistance

Julia Hamilton, Extended Day Director for Monongalia County Schools, penned this guest blog on how the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program helps her students and why they can't afford cuts to the program. Congress returns to Washington this week, and members of the conference committee will debate the Senate and House versions to finalize the Farm Bill.  One…

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July 31, 2018 by WVCBP
Guest Blog: Social Worker Sees Value in Strengthening SNAP

West Virginia Community Engagement Program Manager Caitlin Sussman MSW, LGSW penned this guest blog for the West Virginia Center on Budget and Policy as part of its coalition efforts to protect and strengthen food assistance that is being threatened by the U.S. House Farm Bill.  As a Social Worker at a free health clinic, I…

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April 25, 2018 by Sean O'Leary
West Virginia’s Performance Funding Model Should Work To Avoid Unintended Consequences

The West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission has been developing a model of performance-based funding for West Virginias higher education institutions, as mandated by the legislature. While 37 states have adopted some form of performance-based funding models for higher education, they have not all been successful, and have led to some unintended consequences. Performance-based funding models for…

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March 30, 2018 by Ted Boettner
Two Options For Addressing PEIA Revenue Shortfall

Last week, the West Virginia Public Employees Insurance Agency (PEIA) Task Force held its first meeting to address the growing costs of health care coverage for public workers in West Virginia. The growing costs of health care for teachers and other public employees was a central reason why teachers went on strike for nine school…

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January 23, 2018 by Sean O'Leary
Free Community College is a Good Idea, Residency Requirements and Drug Tests are Not

West Virginia joins states around the country in moving towards free higher education, with SB 284, the free community college bill supported by Governor Justice and Senate President Carmichael. The "WV Invest Grant" program would provide a grant offsetting tuition for eligible students who enroll in one of the state's two year colleges. The grant…

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September 28, 2017 by Ted Boettner
Improving Juvenile Justice in West Virginia

Every year in West Virginia, around 4,000 juveniles will appear before a judge. Pending the judge’s decision, a juvenile may be given an improvement period to address the behavior, put on probation, referred to a special court, or committed to some form of out-of-home placement. However, the state’s juvenile justice system can be confusing and…

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