For many years, the general public all over the country and most recently here in Virginia, based on a Mason Dixon poll, have told the pollsters and the politicians that they care deeply about the plight of children.
The public wants our nominees for governor, Ken Cuccinelli and Terry McAuliffe, to come forth with their agendas for children on their websites, in speeches and during debates. While politicians, including our nominees, often speak compellingly and passionately about the need for children to receive a quality education, it is most difficult for a child who comes to school hungry, in need of a safe place to live, lacking a medical or dental checkup, or victimized by abuse or neglect to take advantage of a quality learning environment.
These are the difficult circumstances that make politicians uncomfortable, because they don’t know what to do about them, or given these childrens’ weak or nonexistent political clout, often pass and do little or nothing.
To Governor McDonnell’s credit, he launched in May, in tandem with National Foster Care month, Virginia Adopts: Campaign for 1000, designed to find forever families for over 1300 of Virginia’s children in foster care, who are eligible and waiting to be adopted. The Governor is to be commended for this bold initiative, which is “raising up” these children who, heretofore, have too often languished as they await permanent families. www.virginiaadopts.virginia.gov.
I challenge and implore Mr. McAuliffe and Mr. Cuccinelli to step up and be bold, like Governor McDonnell, and follow the lead of the voters who demand action for Virginia’s vulnerable and hurting children. For their campaigns and the voting public to learn more, go to www.strongkidsstrongvirginia.com, and then bring your concerns, yet again, to our nominees’ campaign leadership. They both have plenty of time before the election to listen and act. Children in trouble are counting on them, and so are we, the ever discerning voters.