Briefing – Protecting Children in Tough Economic Times: What Can the United States Learn from Britain?

Federal Budget
Poverty & Family Economics

11:00 am - 12:30 pm

Event Type


How is it possible to protect children while also cutting public spending? As the U.S. makes difficult decisions on how to reduce our deficit, the approach taken by the UK government over the past year offers some useful lessons.

First Focus, in conjunction with Senator Bob Casey, and the Foundation for Child Development hosted a Congressional Briefing to discuss how the UK, following a successful, decade-long campaign to reduce child poverty by half, took concrete steps to maintain its commitment to reduce child poverty following a change in government. The discussion also included the role of the media in elevating the importance of children in the national budget discussions and the parallels the United States can consider as it faces similar challenges with budget negotiations and deficit reduction. A new paper commissioned by First Focus and authored by Jane Waldfogel, author of Britain’s War on Poverty, was released, entitled Protecting Children in Tough Economic Times: What Can the United States Learn from Britain?


• Senator Bob Casey (D-PA)
• Ruby Takanishi, President of the Foundation for Child Development
Jane Waldfogel, PhD, Professor of Social Work and Public Affairs at the Columbia University School of Social Work and Visiting Professor at the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion at the London School of Economics
James S. Marks, MD, MPH, Senior Vice President and Director of the Health Group at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Alexandra Frean, U.S. Business Correspondent, The Times of London
Bruce Lesley, President of First Focus

For more information, contact Katie Peters at 202-657-0685 or

First Focus would like to thank the Foundation for Child Development for their support in making this event possible.