More Campaign Activities

February 11, 1999

The Campaign uses candidate briefings, candidate questionnaires, a children's forum, and community forums to ensure public policies support Massachusetts kids.

Candidate Briefings
During an election year, the Massachusetts Campaign for Children will educate candidates about its evolving children's agenda and solicit their support for legislation promoting the well-being of children and families. Through candidate briefings, representatives of the Campaign will familiarize candidates and their staff with Massachusetts KIDS COUNT data and items on the children's agenda. Briefing books will summarize this information for quick reference. Campaign members will also be use briefing books for meetings with the editorial boards of newspapers in target cities. The briefings should encourage candidates to present their positions on children's issues for public consumption and scrutiny.

 

The Campaign remains nonpartisan, but strictly pro-child. It does not endorse, or rank candidates for public office, or lobby legislators on specific legislative proposals. "This is strictly a citizen education and mobilizing initiative," Bernier says.

Candidate Questionnaires
Candidate questionnaires, another citizen education effort, seek to elicit commitments to specific actions by candidates if they win the election. Completed questionnaires will be released at press conferences and printed in local and state newspapers before the primaries and again before an election. Campaign members will distribute copies of questionnaires at polls.

Children's Convention
The Campaign expects to give high school students a voice in identifying key children's issues at a statewide children's convention. Student government leaders, members of the debating team and current events clubs express their concerns and develop their own children's agenda. The convention is designed to draw media attention to those issues that kids deem most important for children and families in the state, and may serve as the future site of a formal children's debate.

Community Forums
Community forums highlight the five issue areas outlined by the Campaign: poverty, health, child care, education, abuse prevention, and family support. In addition to providing KIDS COUNT data on how Massachusetts kids and families fare in these areas, the forums serve as an opportunity for Campaign members to link locally and develop local action plans. The Campaign may tape these forums for use in informational TV spots later on in the year.

 


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