With the ceremonial aspects of the changes in state government now complete, the substantive work of the Texas Legislature is getting underway. In this post, I want to highlight the fact that legislative advocacy is a team pursuit. In these endeavors, we are proud to join our voices with those of other leading child advocacy organizations across our great state.
LSS is an active participant in the Child Protection Roundtable, an informal body formed a number of years ago to help child advocates speak with one voice as much as possible. The group was created and is facilitated by TexProtects, based in Dallas. TexProtects is a strong voice for child protection and focuses on improving the child protective services system, advancing prevention and early intervention programs, and providing pertinent research to inform state policymakers and stakeholders.
We are very honored to have been welcomed to the Roundtable and to associate our organization with TexProtects and these other active participants in the Child Protection Roundtable:
- Texans Care for Children is a policy advocacy organization that focuses on what is best for Texas children in five areas – child protective services, juvenile justice, mental wellness, health and fitness and early childhood education and opportunities.
- One Voice Texas is a Houston-based collaborative for health and human services, working to assure that the needs of all Texans are addressed through education/awareness, program development, advocacy, regulation and funding.
- Texas CASA is the statewide coordinating organization for the more than 70 local chapters that recruit and train volunteer court-appointed special advocates to work with children in foster care.
- CACTX is the statewide coordinating organization for the nearly 70 local children’s advocacy centers serving children entering the justice system as the result of suspected sexual abuse, severe physical abuse or witnessing a violent crime.
- NASW-TX is the statewide organization representing the state’s professional social workers by advancing social work practice and the profession and promoting unimpeded access to services for everyone in need.
- Mental Health America – Texas is the state’s largest and longest serving mental health education and advocacy group, and administers the “Parents as Teachers” prevention and early intervention program.
As we move forward with The New LSS, we recognize that acting alone we can only move the needle so far. Working with others as a cohesive unit greatly improves our chances for achieving measurable forward progress toward achieving our new mission.
These outstanding organizations and their leaders deserve the thanks and support of all who are involved in the great cause of promoting child well-being in Texas.
In the weeks ahead, we will begin to explore some of the policy issues that will be debated at the Capitol over the weeks ahead. In the meantime, if you have not already done so, please be sure to sign up at www.TheNewLSS.org to join our journey!