The Governor's Commission on Children and Families was created to work with the Governor and Children's Cabinet of Pennsylvania to identify barriers to the provision of services that are integrated, comprehensive and collaborative in nature; to make recommendations concerning removing or decreasing these barriers; and, to recommend to the Governor and Cabinet initiatives to improve the lives of children and families in the Commonwealth. The Commission was designed to maximize community input and respect community differences, yet recognize that Pennsylvania's children and families have common needs and aspirations.
In order to fulfill its advisory role to the Children's Cabinet, the Commission endorses the following principles for program, policy and investments designed to support children and youth from birth to adulthood.
The Governor's Commission for Children and Families will:
- Support efforts to improve service coordination and integration in order to assure that services are child focused, family friendly, comprehensive, timely, accessible and culturally effective.
- Focus its effort on activities and initiatives that fall within a continuum of primary prevention and early intervention and are designed to maintain or improve child outcomes.
- Target its energies to advance strategies that are evidence based and designed to improve child and family outcomes.
- Seek the input and advice of young people as well as families.
- Take steps to improve families' access to the information and supports they need to raise their children healthy, safe, well educated and prepared for adulthood.
- Advance and support programs that are built on community determined need, locally shaped policies and strategies, build community partnerships, and include families as key decision makers.
- Advocate for funding for programs that is long term, sustainable and adequate to provide high quality services; including the ability to attract and retain qualified staff in response to community needs.
- Work to assure program quality through a system of standards and accountability linked to adequate technical assistance and supports for providers.