September 12, 2014
by Harkin Press Staff
Serving others and giving back to our communities are some of the most important things we can do as American citizens. One way to get involved in our communities is AmeriCorps, a service-minded program that provides vital supports that help strengthen communities across the country and in Iowa. Today marks the 20th anniversary of the program that works to preserve and protect our environment, help clean up communities in need of disaster recovery, and serve low-income areas across the country. Each year, more than 1,000 Iowa residents serve in AmeriCorps programs that help build strong communities across the state. Since 1994, Iowans have served more than 12 million hours and have qualified for student loan repayment and scholarships totaling more than $27,000,000.
As Chairman of the appropriations subcommittee that funds AmeriCorps, Harkin has worked to boost funding for the program, including a $75 million increase last year for the Corporation for National and Community Service, which administers AmeriCorps. This effort will support an additional 8,000 AmeriCorps membersacross the country this year, and a total of approximately 80,000 AmeriCorps members. More recently In June, Harkin introduced his fiscal year 2015 appropriations bill that would provide an additional $15 million increase for the Corporation for National and Community Service to continue to expand national and community service opportunities through AmeriCorps. The work that AmeriCorps members do across Iowa is essential in helping build strong communities. In everything from mentoring kids after school to teaching healthy eating to protecting our natural resources, AmeriCorps is making a difference. Click here to learn more about AmeriCorps getting involved: http://www.nationalservice.gov/programs/americorps/americorps20
July 11, 2014
At a Senate Appropriations hearing yesterday, Senator Harkin spoke out about the humanitarian need to provide care and basic protections for the children fleeing severe gang and drug violence in their home countries. Harkin, a lifelong defender of human rights, said that our country should be focused on the best interests of these children. He spoke out in support of a funding request to address the crisis and help with the humanitarian needs of the children in the short-term.
June 12, 2014
On World Day Against Child Labor, Harkin Urges Largest Tobacco Companies to Prohibit Child Labor in the Supply Chain
Today, on World Day Against Child Labor, Senator Tom Harkin led a group of 17 Senators in sending a letter to the ten largest tobacco companies urging them to prohibit child labor in their supply chain. The letter comes on the heels of a recent Human Rights Watch report that found that nearly three-quarters of the child tobacco workers in the four largest tobacco-producing states had experienced the sudden onset of serious symptoms, including nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, headaches, dizziness, difficulty breathing, skin rashes, and irritation to their eyes and mouths; while working on tobacco fields and in curing barns. Many of these symptoms are consistent with acute nicotine poisoning. He also delivered a speech on the Senate floor to bring attention to the millions of children across the globe who continue to be trapped in forced and abusive labor, often in extremely hazardous conditions. Harkin is a life-long defender of human rights. Click here to watch Harkin’s speech, and here to learn more about the letter.
June 11, 2014
Under a recent announcement by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), early childhood providers in Iowa will be able to apply for approximately $3.3 million in new funding to expand Early Head Start and establish new Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships. This funding was announced as part of a grant competition by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and possible as a result of Senator Harkin’s work in Congress.
May 1, 2014
Today, the Obama Administration announced that more than 29,163 Iowans are among the eight million Americans that have signed up for health insurance coverage through the federal and state Marketplaces created under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). As Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, Harkin played a pivotal role in the passage of the ACA. Since the enactment of the law, many Iowans have written to Senator Harkin with the stories of health coverage they were able to access through Iowa’s Marketplace. Here are two stories that demonstrate how the ACA is achieving its goal – helping millions of Americans access quality, affordable health care for themselves and their families:
April 10, 2014
Last night, at an event in the U.S. Capitol, the Internal Labour Organization (the ILO) honored Senator Harkin’s decades-long effort to end child labor around the world. The ILO is a United Nations agency that promotes rights at work, encourages employment opportunities, and enhances social protection. Watch the video here: http://bit.ly/1hDBUQN.
April 2, 2014
During a LHHS subcommittee hearing today, Chairman Tom Harkin asked Dr. Francis Collins, MD, Ph.D, Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to provide a status report on retiring chimpanzees. Senator Harkin has actively worked to improve the care and treatment of research chimpanzees for the last two decades as Chair of the LHHS appropriations subcommittee and later the Chair of the Health Education Labor Pensions Committee.
March 25, 2014
Today, Senator Harkin joined members of the delegation to deliver remarks at the unveiling of a statue honoring Dr. Norman Borlaug at the U.S. Capitol. A native of Cresco, IA, Dr. Borlaug is known as the “Father of the Green Revolution” for his work to eradicate famine in developing countries around the world with his creation of disease resistant wheat. Borlaug is also the founder of the World Food Prize, and is one of only five people to have been honored with the Nobel Peace Prize, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Medal of Honor. Click here to watch Senator Harkin’s remarks. A photo from the event is available here.
March 19, 2014
With only a few days left to sign up for health coverage through the Affordable Care Act, Senator Harkin recorded a message to spread the word about open enrollment on the Health Insurance Marketplace. Iowans without health insurance can sign up for quality, affordable coverage until March 31. Already, more than five million Americans – including more than 15,000 Iowans – have signed up for health care plans through the marketplace. Thanks to the ACA, insurance companies now cover health services like doctor’s visits, prescription drugs, ambulatory care, and hospital stays. In addition, preventive care like cancer and cholesterol screenings are covered with no additional money out of pocket. For more information about signing up for a health insurance plan, visit www.healthcare.gov or call 1-800-318-2596.
February 27, 2014
Senator Harkin today welcomed a USDA announcement prohibiting junk food marketing in schools, noting that the announcement builds on Harkin’s work over the years to promote the health and nutrition of our nation, especially among kids. Harkin raised the alarm about childhood obesity and its importance as a major public health issue decades ago and has since fought to promote these policies. This actuality is available here.
February 26, 2014
Harkin to Hold Hearing on the Economic Impact of Alzheimer’s in America; State of Research to Prevent the Disease
Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies (LHHS subcommittee), will hold a hearing this afternoon at 2:00 PM ET, to examine the economic impact of Alzheimer’s in America and assess the state of biomedical research related to prevention and treatment of the disease. Witnesses will include the Director of National Institute of Health Francis Collins, Former Congressman Dennis Moore, Director of the RAND Center for the Study of Aging Michael D. Hurd, and Celebrity Advocate Seth Rogen.