Expert Opinions: Child, Family and Community Wellbeing

Serving Florida’s Sex Trafficking Victims: Moving Beyond Service Gaps to Coordinated Systems of Care

The Services and Resources Committee of the Florida Statewide Council on Human Trafficking has released its supplement to the 2016 annual report on human trafficking response in Florida. The committee found that Florida’s current system of care to serve victims of sex trafficking remains fragmented, and the state’s ability to strategically manage care and leverage services for survivors is weak. In order to better serve victims of sex trafficking, the committee has found that Florida should create a centralized, coordinated system to facilitate the continuity of services and improve outcomes for survivors. The committee additionally highlighted Voices for Florida’s Open Doors model as a promising structure for coordinated care, and recommended that the Open Doors facilitators be given time to operationalize the model and initiate service delivery. Read More

Adults Under Stress Can Undermine Children’s Learning, a Study Finds

While scientist have long established that the crucial first years of life provide the foundation on which learning and life-long progress for children originates, the quality of life struggles for a large number of child care workers, and the impact these struggles have on children’s learning environments, is going unnoticed and not being addressed. Read More

Towards a New Understanding of Mental Illness

30% of survivors from strokes, one of the biggest killers in the US, can now leave the hospital without any disability if they can get to the emergency room within 3 hours of onset. Thomas Insel, Director of the National Institute of Mental Health, attributes such success stories to early detection. View Video

Better Serve Citizens & Add to Economic Opportunity

Bruce J. Katz, a Centennial Scholar at the Brookings Institution, suggests the U.S look across the ocean to the U.K. for ways to better consolidate government revenue streams, grant greater budgetary flexibility to better serve citizens, and add to economic opportunity. Read More

Philanthropy + Venture Capital = A Much Needed Investment Model

In his article, “Saving the World, Start-up Style,” Adam Davidson, co-founder of NPR’s “Planet Money,” proposes that a combination of philanthropy and the venture-capital philosophy of embracing risk, could have significant impact on the poor. This new method of investing could be a welcomed relief for the more than 950,000 or 24% of Florida children living in poverty. Read More

Imbalance in the Federal expenditure between elderly and children

Government spending on the elderly continues to grow at the federal level, what impact might this have on state policy decisions. Read More

Your Kids + My Kids = Our Kids.

Author, public policy professional and educator, Robert Putnam states that the US is experiencing a violation of the core idea of American society where “how you do in life should depend upon your needy skills, talent and your hard work but it shouldn’t depend on what your parents did or did not.” Read More

We’re Making Life Too Hard for Millennials

Steven Rattner, a Wall Street executive and opinion writer, notes that Millennials finances are strapped. The most educated generation in history is on track to becoming less prosperous than their parents and grandparents. Read More

How America is Failing its Youth

A new report by Opportunity Nation, Zeroing In on Place and Race, states that the economic toll of disconnected youth reveals an astonishingly high cost to America’s taxpayers of $26.8 billion in 2013 alone. Approximately one fifth of youth in Florida are neither working nor in school. Read More

No Way Up

The idea that growing inequality will hurt upward mobility might seem self-evident. Likening the problem to “climate change” Putnam says we can’t wait for perfect clarity but must act now to save the American Dream. Photo credit © Simon & Schuster. Read More

The New Jobs Report Shows Janet Yellen’s Quandar in a Nutshell

…Some Fed Watchers are not sure sure that adds up. Read More

Tampa Bay Times Op-Ed Florida Adds Jobs, but Below the Surface Worker Data Bleak

 It seems that economic “good news” abounds in Florida these days. Unemployment fell to 5.6 percent in December, the state’s lowest rate since 2008. According to ADP’s latest monthly report, Florida remains the third-best job creator in the nation. The governor’s office reports more than 728,000 private-sector jobs have been created since 2010.

Things do appear to be looking up, but are we seeing the entire economic picture? Read More

Florida Job Growth Skewed Towards Lower End of Wage Scale

A recent study from the Economic Policy Institute shows the State of Florida ranking fourth worst in income equality. The top 1 percent of Florida wage earners made an average of $1.49 million in 2012, while the bottom 99 percent earned an average family income of $34,387. Read More

Poll Shows American Women Leaving the Workforce

As recently as 1990, the United States had one of the top employment rates in the world for women, but it has now fallen behind many European countries, according to a recent New York Times/CBS News/Kaiser Family Foundation poll. After climbing for six decades, the percentage of women in the American workforce peaked in 1999, at 74 percent for women between 25 and 54. It has fallen since, to 69 percent today. The percentage of working women in many other countries, however, has continued to climb. Among the countries outranking the United States in prime-age women’s labor force are Switzerland, Australia, Germany France, Britain, Canada, Poland, Portugal, Japan — just to name a few. Read More

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