Gov. DeWine's 2022 State of the State Address: Affirming a Commitment to Ohio’s Youngest Children


Governor DeWine's 2022 State of the State Address: Affirming a Commitment to Ohio’s Youngest Children


COLUMBUS, OH – Today, Governor Mike DeWine issued his 2022 State of the State Address, affirming that, “We have a moral obligation to make sure that every child has the chance to live up to their God-given potential.”


Groundwork Ohio applauds Governor DeWine’s continued commitment to Ohio’s youngest children to support their healthy development, ensure they thrive, and that they are set up for long-term success. From the beginning of his administration, Governor DeWine has elevated Ohio’s infants, toddlers, and preschool-age children as a priority. The Governor and his administration are:

  • Doubling Ohio’s investment in voluntary home visiting programs;

  • Increasing eligibility levels and access to quality child care to empower Ohio’s families to take on full-time work;

  • Making important investments in services to ensure fewer Ohio babies are born exposed to opiates;

  • Working to remove toxic lead paint from homes so that children do not grow up with life-long brain damage; and

  • Ensuring that more at-risk, pregnant moms will have a roof over their heads, because inadequate housing is a huge risk factor for infant and maternal mortality.

The Governor has also made strong commitments to increasing Ohio’s focus on mental health, through strengthening the behavioral health workforce, expanding research and innovation, and increasing community capacity to offer better crisis response services and treatment and increased prevention efforts.


“The vital truth is that it’s never too early to invest in our youngest children—but it can be too late. On the heels of an unprecedented pandemic that has had far-reaching, negative impacts on the health and well-being of Ohio’s youngest children and their families, it is more critical now than ever to lay a strong foundation for early childhood mental health,” said Shannon Jones, Groundwork Ohio’s President & CEO. “We look forward to working with Governor DeWine and his administration to ensure that our youngest and most vulnerable children don’t fall through the cracks.”

# # #

Groundwork Ohio is a committed, nonpartisan public-policy research and advocacy organization formed in 2004 that champions high-quality early learning and healthy development strategies from the prenatal period to age five, that lay a strong foundation for Ohio kids, families, and communities. Learn more about Groundwork Ohio at www.groundworkohio.org and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.