Legislation gives mothers, kids chance

DEAR EDITOR:

As a home visitor working with pregnant women and parents of children aged 3 and younger, I strive to improve the opportunities available to the kids in our community. We are incredibly fortunate to live in a country that provides support and resources to help children thrive, especially since many kids around the world will never have the same chances to learn — or even reach their 5th birthday.

Our nation has provided great leadership in the fight to end preventable deaths of mothers and children from causes such as pneumonia, malaria and diarrhea.

We’ve come very far in the past few decades, but there is so much more to do. Every day, 15,000 children die from preventable causes, and 800 women die from complications of pregnancy and childbirth. These women and children deserve to live, go to school and have a bright future.

That’s why I’m glad that the Reach Every Mother and Child Act (Reach Act), legislation supported by Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, would help expand proven solutions to end these deaths within a generation. And because the U.S. cannot do it alone, the bill would introduce new financing mechanisms to bring in new investors and improve the use of existing taxpayer dollars.

This legislation gives our country the chance to continue its leadership and keep its promise to help end preventable maternal, newborn and child deaths.

I thank Sen. Rob Portman and U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan for supporting the Reach Act in order to give all children a strong start in life. I am proud to know my elected officials both have stepped up to support this vital legislation.

STEPHINE LEWIS

Warren

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