Lowey Announces Reintroduction of Congressional Afterschool Caucus, Named Democratic Co-Chair
WASHINGTON, DC – Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-NY17/Rockland-Westchester), Ranking Member on the House Appropriations Committee, today announced the reintroduction of the Congressional Afterschool Caucus, of which she will serve as the Democratic Co-Chair. The bipartisan caucus will support afterschool programs and advocate for sufficient resources to promote quality programming in New York and across the country. Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11) will serve as the Republican Co-Chair.
“Afterschool programs are critical to fostering student development and achievement through activities that complement classroom learning, and they are also indispensable for parents who need a safe and educational alternative to costly child care,” said Congresswoman Lowey. “I look forward to once again serving as Co-Chair of the Congressional Afterschool Caucus and to working with our members to support afterschool programs and to highlight the good work these programs do for families in our communities.”
“I am proud to lead the Congressional Afterschool Caucus along with my Democratic colleague, Congresswoman Nita Lowey of New York,” said Congressman Barletta. “Afterschool programs, like SHINE, give students of all ages the opportunity to have brighter futures while also helping working families. When you give young children hope and the possibility of what their futures can be, there’s no stopping them. I look forward to working with my colleagues in Congress to continue advocating for programs like SHINE, and believe the caucus will be helpful in educating other members about the positive impacts of afterschool programming.”
“We are thrilled that Representatives Lou Barletta and Nita Lowey will co-chair the House Afterschool Caucus this year,” said Jodi Grant, executive director of the Afterschool Alliance. “Both are powerful, longtime champions who understand the essential role that afterschool and summer learning programs play in keeping kids safe, inspiring them to learn and helping working families. The Caucus has never had stronger leadership, and we have never needed it more than we do right now, when we are facing unprecedented threats to federal funding for afterschool. The decisions Congress makes in the next few months will help shape the future for millions of students and families as well as their schools and communities.”
Congresswoman Lowey has been a leader in the U.S. House in advancing legislation and securing funding to advance afterschool programs. She helped create the 21st Century Community Learning Centers, the first federal afterschool initiative, and has fought to increase funding from $1 million in 1996 to more than $1 billion today. In 2005, Congresswoman Lowey formed the Congressional Afterschool Caucus to build support for these programs in Congress and provide sufficient funding to meet the growing demand for afterschool initiatives.