tv First Lady Melania Trump Cabinet Secretaries Discuss Youth Programs CSPAN March 24, 2019 12:49am-1:32am EDT
and then erica martinson discusses the 30th annual anniversary of exxon felt as disaster. disaster. on sunday, a week after announcing her presidential bid, kierstin gillibrand held a kickoff rally. live coverage begins at 12:30 p.m. eastern. app.n our free radio trumpst lady a melania posted a be best event at the white house to discuss how their departments were progressing with youth programs. servicesh and human secretary and education secretary joining first lady.
-- joined the first lady. mrs. trump: good morning. thank you for coming and taking part in what i hope is the first of many conversations we will have to enhance the lives of children everywhere. my focus has and always will be on our children, the next generation. they are our future doctors, nurses, firefighters, scientists, teachers, chefs, generals, pilots, designers, reporters, and missionaries, just to name a few. as you know, last may i launched my be best initiative. this past year, i've had the opportunity to work with many of you, traveling both domestically and internationally.
well-being, safety, and opioid abuse. secretary devos has done a great job providing opportunities for children in education and has been a great partner in helping grow be best message in our school. be best has also worked closely with the department of health and human services, particularly in learning more about the dangers of opioids on mothers and babies. last october, i had an opportunity to travel to four african countries where i saw firsthand the good work being done through the united states agency for international development. i'm glad mr. greene can join us today.
it is with great appreciation i welcome all of you for this meeting. i'm looking forward to learning more about the programs available, and how we can work together to continue creating more opportunities to help and empower our children. i would now like to call on secretary azar to share more about the working group for youth program. sec. azar: thank you for welcoming us to the white house today. the leadership and compassion you get to the young people of the country every day is appreciated and inspires each of us to how we can use our leadership roles for the use. your be best message concentrating on well-being, social media use, and opioid is timely and reflects the objectives of this working
group. allow me to speak for all of us in stressing gratitude for your leadership. as chairman, i would like to give a brief history of the working group and what a dozen iswhat it does and why it important. it has its roots in the 2000's when there was a recognition for a need for government programs to focus on helping and people thrive in their communities. as deputy secretary, i sat at one of the early meetings that gave rise to the working group. it was created by an executive order entitled "improving the coordination and effectiveness of youth programs." you do not have to guess what it is about. today, there are a total of 21 federal agencies that regulate coordinate in exchange information on the effectiveness of youth programs. through our office of planning and evaluation, hhs is proud to host the monthly meetings of this group, including federal stuff involved in youth programs across these agencies.
the meetings to discuss current work, new research, and innovative strategies for improving the lives of our countries in youth. i would like to thank hhs staff and everyone across the other agencies that have advanced this work over the years. one of the most important duties of the group is overseeing youth.gov, a one-stop shop for resources ranging on information for mental health and substance abuse prevention to civic engagement and afterschool programs. one part of the site especially relative to the first lady's work is resources on substance abuse. our country's opioid crisis is sometimes thought of as a challenge mainly for middle-aged and older americans, but rates of opioid use in youth has risen to radically. the working group has created and\ opioid crisis resource that can help people recognize signs
of opioid abuse in young people in particular. many of you are also aware of this administrations deep concern regarding skyrocketing use of e-cigarettes by young people. the site also hosts resources for that, including the real cost campaign that educates youth about tobacco and e-cigarettes. the fda delivered a presentation on this at the most recent working group. i also want to highlight to particular policy efforts out of the working group. one, a collaboration between the department of labor and the hhs mental health agency. they use the usability program to address substance abuse. it is supported by the department of labor and provides youth with the ability to develop construction skills. there were dropouts to the substance use.
they developed a pilot program to tackle substance abuse in the program. the pilot helped increase graduation rates and reduce expulsions for substance abuse and is now funded by a foundation. this working group has also been busy this year on establishing common outcome measures across all 21 partner agencies. the goal is to build a unified set of measures used to assess the outcomes of all the various programs we run for youth. are they improving education outcomes? this is important and will be helpful to have a common standard. our mission is to improve the health and well-being of every american and improving outcomes for use is a crucial step toward health and well-being in the rest of life. we are proud to run this working group and we are grateful to the first lady for hosting us. i will hand it back to the first
lady. mrs. trump: thank you for sharing this important work and the working group and the great youth programs in this agency. i would like to call on secretary devos to share the presentation the department of education has prepared for today. sec. devos: thank you for your leadership on this initiative, and secretary azar, thank you. mrs. trump, i am so pleased that be best aims to help our youth with issues they face daily. kindness, determination, respect, and positive behaviors online and in-person all underpin a life well lived. each house needs meaningful ways to connect with their school community, and as teachers and parents worked to promote positive school climates and
create safe and supportive learning environment in their own communities, the department comes alongside to offer support. first, it is important to acknowledge that loneliness and isolation are widespread. despite technology that allows us to be more connected than ever, at least on the surface, too many students are more disconnected and lonely than ever before. schools are fostering connection through an approach called positive behavioral intervention and support. the department of education has a pbis technical center that supports school personnel and prompting, modeling, practicing, and encouraging positive social and behavioral skills. one of the recommendations was for more communities to explore whether this might be beneficial for their students. like the commission recommendation, pbis does not prescribe one approach. it is a framework to implement specific practices that best
suit students unique needs. when students learn to treat each other as they would like to be treated themselves, what we commonly call as the golden rule, school climates become more positive, safer, and student-teacher relationships are more trusting and respectful. schools that take pbis seriously report fewer antisocial and aggressive behaviors, fewer bullying incidents, and major discipline infractions, and overall improvement in student engagement and academic achievement. i saw this firsthand at an elementary school in anne arundel county. students joined in group activities that helped them build relationships with their peers. i enjoyed participating in an activity that focused on how students treat each other. each day, the class assembled in a circle and decided how they would like to greet that day. the day of my visit, it was a
fist pump. another day we can foster safe environments for students is empower them to choose the right fit for their education. florida, for instance, recently established the nations first tax credit scholarship program for students who have been bullied or victims of violence. no student should be forced to try to learn in an unsafe or hostile environment since the because he or she is assigned by home address. this administration recently announced a book proposal to supplement programs like florida's hope scholarship. education freedom scholarships will give hundreds of thousands of students across the country the power to find the right fit for their education. our bold proposal will offer a federal income tax credit for contributions to nonprofit organizations that provide scholarships to students. some states may choose to use the scholarship to enhance existing public school choices.
other states may choose to model florida's hope scholarship program. the point is, it is up to families and communities to decide. when we talk about policies and programs, it is easy to get focused there and forget about people. amani's story brings that back and focus. when she was in second grade, students ruthlessly mocked her appearance and distracted her from study. this made her sad, because it when it comes to my grades, she said, i get really serious. her bullies continued to harass her daily. one day, another student slapped her. amani called her mom in tears and said she did not want to go back to school anymore. her mother had repeatedly tried to get school administrators to do something about the bullying but they did not take it seriously, and they did not take
a slapped face seriously. thanks to the florida tax credit scholarship, she is now in a safe, happy, and thriving new school. our mission is a safe family environment, the school leader said, we see it as a partnership between home and school to raise great kids successful in life. her new school is intentional about keeping kids from bullying. we talk about kindness first, she said at a weekly gathering of students. people talk about what we do and should do in the world. we get it right. every student needs to be free to pursue the education that gets it right for them. in places and in ways that will unlock their potential and unleash their creativity so that they and we together can achieve our best. thank you. mrs. trump: thank you very much. very important works, what you do, school to school, and i hope we achieve in every state at least one school if not more that they have those programs, and we will work hard on it.
thank you very much, secretary devos. and now, i would like to call secretary carson to provide more insight into the great work of strong families. sec. carson: on like to start by thanking the first lady for organizing the event and your inspirational leadership, and thank all of the people involved in this endeavor. having spent my previous career dealing with children, this is special for me. the first lady is doing something truly great with be best, helping to prepare the next greatest generation, which is an effort worthy of praise. as a doctor, i know the health of the community is measured i by more than vital signs. a neighborhood's heart and soul are its strong families.
that's why hud launched a program to strengthen and improve the quality of light for hud assisted families. our mission is to ensure that all families have access to safe, affordable homes. but that is not just about housing capital, it is about human capital. such strong family initiatives is a nationwide series of events that takes place throughout the year. local families receive health, education, and economic empowerment resources, and have access to legal and expungement services, get involved in workshops for science, technology, engineering, and math, participate in digital literacy, training, leadership development workshops, and have fun. more than 1000 communities have been served by these powerful
events, which have impacted tens of thousands of hud assisted families across the country. it began last year as an expansion of hud's long-standing efforts to promote responsible fatherhood. fathers not only provide boys with role models and mentors, their presence could indicate other neighborhood factors that benefit families like low incarcerating rates and better job opportunities. by amplifying and expanding hud's resources for responsible fatherhood and family togetherness, we recognize that perhaps the greatest single determinant of a child's future is the active and loving engagement of all parental figures, including fathers, mothers, stepfathers, stepmothers, grandparents, siblings, mentors, and more. having been raised by a single mother myself from the time i
was eight years old, the strong families initiative is more than a professional source of pride. it is a personal honor to pay back the debt of gratitude i and countless others owe to families who sacrificed their yesterdays for our tomorrows. by paying it forward with tools for all families to use. at strong families of them, thousands of books are given away as part of our book rich environment initiative. book rich environment is a tri-sector collaboration between nonprofit organizations, national government agencies, and corporate publishers that aim to infuse public housing communities across the country with a vibrant and accessible culture of books. i am proud to announce hud will be giving away its one millionth book this year to families living in public housing. i was in florida last summer giving away books and ice cream and the kids were much more interested in the books, i was delighted. [laughter]
sec. carson: in my own childhood, books saved my life. my mother encouraged reading and made sure my brother and i were surrounded by books. we were not rich, we were poor, but books opened more doors for me than anything else in my life except god. i became a doctor because of books. my brother became a rocket scientist because of books. today i stand before you as hud secretary because early on, books were passed on to me just as they are passed on in many american families. when families have books in the home, children become interested in books, which lead to literacy, which leads to education, if a child is reading, the trajectory of their life is changed. our strong family initiatives is making a lifelong impact on children's education by introducing students and public housing to project soar, students opportunities, achievements, results.
it is funded by hud to help young people plan for in succeed in post secondary educational programs. it is achieved in part by introducing students to education navigators that serve as personal guides and mentors. hud's achievements and education are reflected in stories like that of stephanie sanchez, who recently became the first in her family to attend college. according to stephanie, her education navigator enrique played a pivotal role in helping her apply for federal student aid, managed college applications, and stay on top of deadlines throughout the semester. she is now at california state university long beach. i applaud the first lady and the be best initiative.
it is said it takes a village to raise a child, but it takes a community to achieve unity. i look forward to working with the interagency working group to serve america's communities with a shared mission and common vision to promote the positivity of lives and the future of america's children. thank you. mrs. trump: thank you very much, secretary carson. very important work you do, that we all do, and your story is very inspirational. it should be an inspiration to all of the children out there. as i always say, children absolutely deserve and need loving, strong families. it is very important, what kind of support they have from us and the families. again, secretary azar, i would like to ask you again if you could share your work at the
department of health and human services. sec. azar: i wonder, if you would mind if our assistant secretary for health who leads the efforts on the opioid crisis, and especially work together on the neonatal abstinence syndrome, good tell you about the work we are doing their? mrs. trump: sure. >> good morning. i am pleased to discuss an issue that is so important to you and all of us, and that is improving the outcomes of the infants and children exposed to opioids prenatally. as a pediatric critical care physician, much like dr. carson, it is important to me. as you have championed, the instances of neonatal syndrome, neonatal opioid withdrawal, has increased, 700% between 2000 and
2014. in 2016 we saw over 5000 babies 25,000 babies affected. this is likely an underestimate because of the inaccuracies and diagnosis and awareness. it does not include other drugs, including methamphetamine. we are all aware of the shakiness, jitteriness, seizures, dehydration in babies exposed to opioids, but what is much more ominous is growth restriction or early death. the long-term outcomes of early birth weight and developmental disorders we are now seeing in children. under secretary azar, we are trying to end addiction long-term in america.
important components of this research program include expanding therapeutic options for opioid prevention and optimization of effective treatment strategies for opioid addiction, understanding the biological underpinnings of chronic pain, accelerating the discovery and development of non-addiction pain treatments, and most importantly, enhancing the treatments for instance with infants with neonatal symptom. two major programs will start this year that are historic and lay the foundation of our treatment of these children. the first is called act now, or advancing clinical trials in neonatal opioid which all. -- withdrawl. although we saw our first patient in 1875, we still don't have standard medical practice to know how to best treat individuals with this syndrome. this study which will begin this year will be at 20 sites across the country. it will test strategies,
including nonpharmacologic strategies, or for those who do need pharmacological treatment, how quickly to wean children and what children need what treatment at what time. in addition to the treatment, there will be a two-year follow-up of these children to make sure they are growing and developing normally. in addition to the act now a study, the nih will start this year the healthy brain and child development study, which will be historically important and will enroll up to 10,000 pregnant mothers and follow them and their children for up to 10 years. this will include about 20% of mothers who are exposed to opioids, but also to other drugs or adverse experiences.
there will be long-term collection about pregnancy as well as childhood development and structural measures, as well as data on social, emotional, and cognitive development. the knowledge gained from this study over 10 years will impact our knowledge and treatment abilities for those exposed prenatally or postnatal he to certain drugs or adverse environments. we will understand finally and definitively the future and potential for substance abuse, mental disorders and other developmental problems. hhs will invest $350 million in this study over the first five years. together, these studies will lay the cornerstone of our national scientific strategy to enable children exposed to substances or other adverse environments to be best. thank you. >> thank you. this is a life-saving program
and i hope we can find the best approaches to treating infants. through be best, i have learned about so many programs and traveled the country and saw the treatments available for mothers and babies suffering from these crisis. thank you very much again, and i would like to turn over to the administrator from the federal emergency management agency. >> good morning. it is an honor to be here to have to fema youth programs. let me briefly review the importance of preparing for disasters. children under 18 years old make up 23% of the u.s. population. every day, 63 million children attend childcare or are in school away from their families. disasters impact children across the united states. almost 14% of children and teens have experienced a disaster. 4% within the last year. of those, one quarter experience reporting one or more disasters.
preparedness actions include self worth, positively influence resilience, action and maintenance for activities. let me talk it to you about one of our programs called the youth preparedness council, which brings young leaders who are interested in disaster of hardness and making a difference in their communities by completing projects nationally and locally. it is made up of 15 members selected on their dedication to public service, their efforts in making a difference and potential to expand their impact as national supporters for preparedness. members meet with fema staff throughout their term to provide
input. members also attend the annual summit in washington, d.c. and meet periodically with representatives and work with several projects. members have presented alongside fema leaders at conferences, hosted with other organizations and provided input for their external strategies. members have completed national and local projects, including launching a youth preparedness coalition, conducting outreach in tribal nations, organizing conferences and events, holding youth preparedness councils and preparing exercises in their own communities. students from eighth to 11th grade can apply online for the next term, which closes on march 31. everyone is welcome to apply. our second youth initiative is -- i have a prop i would like to pass on. past that down. ready to help was launched in september of last year.
it is a card game that teaches kids how to stay safe, stay calm get professional help from professionals, give information to responders, and give age-appropriate care. it is designed to be easy playable, portable, and not reliant on technology or the internet, which probably most parents would welcome. we want to reach all audiences. gameification improves retention and increases emergency response behaviors. youth are more likely to take actions, when they learn from interactive activities. parents and adults may find difficult to talk about emergencies. with the card game, children have fun examples of emergencies, by working together using skills that will help them in a real emergency. the card game is currently -- being printed and is free to the public.
>> what do you suggest is the best age to prepare the children? >> i think as early as you can start is good. you have heard stories about what to do when a smoke alarm goes off or how to dial 911, as early as you can get them prepared, the better off we are. >> what you think about the, you know, natural disasters? what is the best age, because they need to understand? >> again, as early as you can. some of these games will help some of these difficult subjects, but the game is a platform to have parents talk about these things. >> thank you very much. as we all know, emergencies are often unexpected likely experienced recently in alabama. it is important to know what to do when you -- when that happens. it is always impressive to see young leaders teaching their
communities and thank you to fema for doing an incredible job. we have one final presentation. i would like to ask administrator green to share with us the work from the united states agency for international development. >> thank you. thank you for your advocacy for children here in the u.s. and all around the world. it is very obvious this is personal to you and we appreciate it. usaid and the be best campaign are united in the belief that by investing in the well-being of children, we really and truly are investing in a brighter future. you have heard here today about the great work being done by the department of education here in the u.s. to improve learning outcomes for children and you have heard from hhs about the work they do to improve health outcomes for americans. i would like to take a few moments to touch upon what we are doing in these and other
areas for children and youth around the world. at usaid, we believe the purpose of foreign assistance must be ending its need to exist and we believe in the innate desire of every person, every community, and every country to want to craft and lead their own bright future. because this desire is deeply ingrained in the american dna, we believe that when our partner countries dedicate themselves to pursuing what we call the journey to self-reliance, we should walk with them along the way. we focus on children and young people across the world, because we know that enabling and empowering them is an irreplaceable part of the journey. remember, there are 1.8 billion young people in the world today.
this is the largest youth population in all of recorded history. 90% of them live in the developing world. sometimes we hear leaders talking about this youth bulge as a problem to be overcome. of course, all of us look at it as an opportunity to be realized. we know that by strengthening the well-being and opportunities of these children and young people, we can left their families, communities, and countries for years to come. what does that look like in practical terms? i would like to briefly summarize for themes that are driving a lot of our work. humanitarian assistance, education, health, and civic engagement. first, humanitarian assistance and crisis response. said they, today, there are more man-made conflict driven disasters underway than ever before. that also means there are more
women and children on the move or living in zones of crisis. some sometimes ask me what it is that worries me most in the world. it is children being born in crisis zones, raised there, and how that affects them and shapes them as they go into adulthood. usaid prioritizes investments of conflict affected youth so that when these crises do wind down, they are better equipped to succeed and contribute to building their communities. our first example is in need democratic republic of the conga, rather has been near continuous war and conflict for years that has disrupted educational service delivery. usaid has developed flexible and adaptable mechanisms to intervene when and where these needs arrive. our youth development activity provides vulnerable youth with
learning pathways and inclusive economic opportunities. psychosocial support and referral services and work-based learning and job placement. we know that education is not only crucial in times of conflict and crisis, educated children and young people engaged in their communities are always the best hope for sustainable economic growth and long-term opportunity. around the world, we have improved youth reading skills, strengthened higher education, and reinforced workforce develop and. our second example. malawi a stop on mrs. trump's first solo trip to africa, usaid is working with local government on a national reading program. we provided quality reading instruction to more than 4.4 million children, trained and coached more than 40,000
teachers and supplied more than 10,000 new textbooks. as a result, the government has adopted our training and coaching model and extended the school day to allow for more reading instruction time. we also know that children can't take it vantage of opportunities unless they are strong and healthy so we prioritize investments in maternal child health. since 2008, we have helped save the lives of 4.6 million children globally. the majority of whom live in sub-saharan africa. the trump administration wants to build upon this work. we want to extend it into the future. a third example.
in zambia, usaid supports the determined resilient and powered aids free men toward and safe project, or trains. we focus on mitigating factors that increase girls risk of hiv exposure and provide them with preventative health, scholarships, school support, and livelihood skills. zambia's dreams center has graduated a remarkable 8545 girls and helped them to live hiv free, craft a brighter future. finally, usaid invests in children and youth civic engagement opportunities, because we know that supporting a new generation of leaders, problem solvers, and innovators will help create more peaceful, stable societies around the world. for example. to support the next generation of leaders, usaid promotes civic engagement among youth so one day they can develop solutions to the challenges facing their
communities. our partnership program has established youth banks to provide community project management and leadership training, as well as financial resources to help them implement the most innovative and exciting ideas. before i conclude, i want to take the opportunity to introduce julie, who is over there on the side of the room. we recently named her to serve as usaid's be best champion. she is the senior coordinator of the u.s. international basic education assistance initiative, so she will continue to promote the be best campaign and usaid in identifying opportunities for greater alignment between the initiative and our everyday programming. i look forward to our continued work with you and hope to get you back out to africa soon. i look forward to ensuring that the administration's investments
in young people continue changing lives for the better, in line with your vision. thank you. >> thank you. thank you julie. for what you do, both of you and your team. i would like to ask if anybody has any comments, suggestions before we closing down. >> first lady, i want to compliment you on a great effort. i have two little nieces and two little nephews and they follow your initiative, said it is really hitting at the children's level. it resonates with them to have self-respect, to take care of themselves, and to dream for the future. thank you. >> thank you. anyone else? i just want to thank you again for all of you for being here
today and for taking part in this important discussion. i also want to thank all of you for hard work you are doing and representing our administration. there is always an opportunity to do more and today's meeting is a start. i will continue to use be best to highlight and promote the successful programs you and others are doing for children in america and around the world. thank you all again for being here and god bless you, god bless your families, and god bless united states of america. [applause] >> the only thing we have to fear is fear itself. ask not much or country can
do for you, ask what you can do for your country. >> the people who knocked these buildings down will know all of us soon. announcer 1: c-span's newest book, the presidents. noted historians rank america's best and worst chief executives. stories gathered by interviews with market residential historians. explore the life events that shaped our leaders, challenges they faced and the legacy they left behind. published by public affairs, the book will be on shelves april 23, but you can preorder your copy as a hardcover or e-book today at c-span.org. or wherever books are sold.
>> on sunday, kiersten gillibrand hosts a rally. coverage on our free radio at. -- app. mcbride with american university center for congressional studies, also served as the former chief of staff for former first lady laura bush. can you scope out recent developments? guest: one of the most recent was this opportunity she used to convene all the agencies programs funded through the federal government. but i found gratifying about that was it was continuing to work of another first lady, laura bus