Category - Policy & Advocacy

Take Action with ICOY

Take action with ICOY in our advocacy efforts by joining our Quick Response Network (QRN). Members of the QRN learn about different advocacy options on policies that impact children, youth, and families.  

ICOY believes in taking action for policies that impact children, youth, and families on both a state and federal level. By taking part in the QRN, participants will receive timely requests to contact lawmakers with support or opposition on policy issues affecting the lives of children and their families.  

During the legislative session, we rely on the QRN to take timely advocacy steps on important issues that impact children, youth, and families. By receiving updates, participants may be expected to:  

  • Call your Representative or Senator by phone or email with provided talking points 
  • Email your Representative or Senator with provided talking points 
  • File a witness slip, as a proponent or in opposition, on a specific bill 
  • Add organization(s) to a collective voice addressing important federal or state issues that impact children, youth, and families. See below for advocacy opportunities.  

ICOY Champion + Ally Legislation QRNs

Advocacy Opportunities:

Child Care Stabilization Act Introduced in Congress

In early September, Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), and Rep. Kathryn Clark (D-MA-5) introduced the Child Care Stabilization Act (S.2777/H.R.5433) to address the impending catastrophe in the child care sector. In 2021, Congress created the child care stabilization program to help buffer the industry against the upheaval of the pandemic and directed $24 billion in child care stabilization assistance. That funding, which has been a lifeline to the sector, expired Sept. 30th. The Child Care Stabilization Act would dedicate $16 billion per year in mandatory funding for the next five years to child care providers.

According to an analysis by The Century Foundation, if no additional funding is found 2,803 child care programs in Illinois are projected to close, 128,209 Illinois children could lose their child care, and 11,360 Illinois child care workers would be out of a job. The Child Care Stabilization Act would continue this much-needed funding stream and ensure that child care centers can provide high-quality and affordable child care.

To encourage our legislators to support this vital funding, ICOY has developed a QRN for advocates to call on their Representatives to co-sponsor this legislation. Please utilize this QRN to spearhead your advocacy efforts!

Runaway and Homeless Youth and Trafficking Prevention Act of 2023

On October 25th, Senator Collins (R-ME) and Senate Majority Whip Durbin (D-IL) and Representatives Bonamici (D-OR-1), Bacon (R-NE-2), Nunn (R-IA-3), and McGarvey (D-KY-3) introduced the Runaway and Homeless Youth and Trafficking Prevention Act (RHYTPA) of 2023 (H.R.6041/S.3125). This bipartisan, bicameral legislation would make critical updates to the federal Runaway and Homeless Youth Act grant program, which provides housing and service options for youth experiencing homelessness.

Annually, an estimated 4.2 million youth and young adults experience homelessness in the United States. These estimates indicate that approximately one in ten adults ages 18 to 25, and one in thirty youth ages 13 to 17 experience homelessness each year. Youth experience homelessness in every American community with prevalence rates similar across rural, suburban, and urban communities.

To encourage our legislators to support this vital funding, ICOY has developed a QRN for advocates to call on their Representatives and Senators to co-sponsor this legislation. For more information on the RHYTPA of 2023, please see this fact sheet put together by the National Network for Youth.

Unsure of how to file a witness slip? Follow these steps:

  1. Click on the above buttons.
  2. Fill out your information.
  3. Press next button - this takes you to the Witness Slip page.
  4. Fill out the form with your information. If you do not represent a firm or organization, please write 'self.'
  5. To indicate your position for the bill, please click “Proponent" OR "Opponent."
  6. For testimony - if you are just filing a slip (not testifying in person or submitting oral testimony), choose "Record of Appearance Only".
  7. To submit the slip, click the button "create slip".

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