Ohio Business, Healthcare, and Early Childhood Leaders Announce 2022 Vote for Ohio Kids Campaign
Gubernatorial Candidates Invited to Participate in the Vote for Ohio Kids Leadership Forum on October 6, 2022
COLUMBUS, OH – Today, Vote for Ohio Kids – an initiative led by Groundwork Ohio, the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association, and Ohio Excels, in partnership with business leaders from across the state – announced the 2022 Vote for Ohio Kids campaign, a dedicated, nonpartisan statewide effort to ensure that Ohio’s next governor prioritizes investments in our youngest Ohioans. As part of the campaign, gubernatorial candidates Mike DeWine and Nan Whaley have been formally invited to participate in the 2022 Vote for Ohio Kids Leadership Forum on Thursday, October 6, 2022 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center.
“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 imperative now than ever that our state leaders chart a path forward that safeguards our most precious resources – our children,” said Shannon Jones, President & CEO of Groundwork Ohio. “Ohio’s next governor must make Ohio’s youngest children a priority to achieve equity and lay a strong foundation for every child.”
“Countless studies have shown that increased isolation, economic instability, and gaps in in-person education over the last two years have exacerbated what was already a challenge beyond measure for our state’s children and youth,” said Nick Lashutka, President and CEO of the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association. “Pediatric mental and behavioral health is an extremely complex issue encompassing prevention and clinical care, workforce, funding, and community collaboration. The Vote for Ohio Kids campaign is committed to ensuring that Ohio’s gubernatorial candidates understand the importance of targeted, evidence-based investments in children’s behavioral health to our state’s future.”
“We are at a critical juncture as a state and nation to recover and rebuild. Ohio must seize this opportunity to advance strong and steadfast leadership that puts Ohio’s youngest children at the forefront of our state’s agenda,” said Lisa A. Gray, President of Ohio Excels. “By providing a strong foundation for our youngest children and their families, Ohio’s next governor and other state and local leaders can set the roadmap for a healthier, more productive, and economically vibrant Ohio that allows more Ohioans to successfully pursue their careers.”
Launched in 2018, the Vote for Ohio Kids campaign is a coalition of business, education, healthcare, and early childhood advocacy leaders unified behind a powerful agenda that puts Ohio kids front and center and positions them for lifelong success. The Vote for Ohio Kids campaign has targeted five areas in our consensus agenda, each with extensive bodies of research demonstrating their effectiveness and the return they offer on state investment.
The Vote for Ohio Kids Leadership Forum will include plenary sessions on early childhood education and healthcare, as well as a guided conversation with the gubernatorial candidates on the importance of investments in Ohio kids. The invitation sent to the gubernatorial candidates was signed by nearly 50 business and community leaders from across the state. You can view the letter sent to Governor DeWine here and former Mayor Nan Whaley here.
About Vote for Ohio Kids
Vote for Ohio Kids is a nonpartisan statewide effort dedicated to ensuring all 2022 gubernatorial candidates prioritize policies for and investments in children and their families to achieve equity and secure a strong future for Ohio. The initiative is led jointly by Groundwork Ohio, the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association, and Ohio Excels in partnership with business, healthcare, and early education leaders as well as child advocates from around the state. To learn more about Vote for Ohio Kids, visit www.VoteforOhioKids.org or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
About the Founders
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 5, that lay a strong foundation for Ohio kids, families, and communities. Through our unique “centers for excellence” – the Center for Family Voice, the Center for Early Learning, and the Center for Maternal and Young Child Health – Groundwork Ohio is committed to making Ohio the best place to be a young child so that every child has the opportunity to reach their full potential. To learn more about Groundwork Ohio, visit www.GroundworkOhio.org and follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
The Ohio Children’s Hospital Association is the voice of Ohio’s youngest patients, their families and health care providers. Our six member hospitals and their nearly 40,000 employees are dedicated to saving, protecting and enhancing children’s lives. Nothing matters more to the future of our state, nation and world than protecting the health and well-being of our children. Sustaining and growing Ohio’s investment in saving, protecting and enhancing the lives of children is both good medicine and sound public policy. To learn more about the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association, visit www.ohiochildrenshospitals.org and follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
Ohio Excels is a nonpartisan coalition of business leaders committed to helping improve education for every Ohio student. Our vision is to ensure all Ohio students have access to and are supported to excel in early childhood, K-12, and postsecondary experiences that prepare them for life and success in a changing economy. Ohio Excels provides an informed business perspective to help improve and transform Ohio’s education system so that it better prepares students to meet the demands of our evolving economy. To learn more about Ohio Excels, visit www.ohioexcels.org and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.