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A Win for Children and Heart Health

We did it! We have another federal win to celebrate! Thanks in large part to the combined voices of thousands of advocates from different partners across the country, the Every Kid Outdoors Act has passed the United States Congress and been signed into law by President Trump!

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You’re the Cure advocates sent thousands of emails, made hundreds of phone calls and had dozens of meetings with federal lawmakers in support of the Every Kid Outdoors Act and our elected officials listened! This is further proof that grassroots activism is a powerful tool for impacting change.

Haven’t heard of the Every Kid Outdoors Act? Want to know why you should care? Allow me to explain…

The Every Kid Outdoors Act (EKO), ensures that a program at the Department of Interior continues. This program, called Every Kid in a Park, gives fourth grade children, siblings and up to  three accompanying adults free access to our national parks and lands. This may not seem like that big of a deal, but to the millions of American children and families that have participated in the program – particularly for children who may not have otherwise had access to the outdoors – and to the millions more that will in the future, it is a very big deal.

Father and son setting up a tent

Having supported the Every Kid in a Park program since its inception, ensuring the program continued through EKO was a priority for the American Heart Association. This program can help provide children and families access to heart-healthy activities like hiking and canoeing, as well as help children and families meet the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans.

Despite the program’s popularity and bipartisan support, the Every Kid in a Park had been threatened with cancellation on multiple occasions. Thankfully, and due in large part to You’re the Cure advocates and our partners, the EKO garnered strong bipartisan support before the end of 2018 and helped pave the way for early action in 2019.

One of the first priorities of the newly sworn in Congress was to pass a large, bipartisan federal lands package, which included EKO. In February, the U.S Senate passed the lands package by an overwhelming 92-8 majority and just 2 weeks later the U.S. House of Representatives followed suit, approving the lands package by a vote of 363-62.

On March 12, 2019 President Trump signed the bipartisan lands package into law, ensuring that the Every Kid in a Park program continues. WE WANT TO THANK YTC ADVOCATES FOR THEIR STRONG SUPPORT. Without your help, Congress and the Administration would not have known how important and how good the park program is for our country.

So please take a moment to congratulate yourself on a job well done and join your fellow YTC advocates in celebrating this great win for children and heart health.

As we emerge from the winter doldrums now is the perfect time to print a pass, pack up the car and bring your 4th grader and family to our national parks and lands. Don’t worry…thanks to the Every Kid Outdoors Act the entry fee is on “U.S.”!

Thank you for all that you do!

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