State Rep. Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron), a vocal proponent of devoting more resources to fighting Ohio’s infant mortality crisis, today responded to Gov. Mike DeWine’s creation of an advisory panel to potentially expand home-visitation programs, which have been shown to increase infant life expectancy and maternal health.
“After years of fighting for opportunities that let families and children have brighter futures, we are glad to see this Governor is making kids a priority,” said Sykes. “We look forward to working with him to push for funding in the budget that makes the lives of Ohio's children and families better.”
Ohio consistently is a national leader in the annual rate of babies who die before reaching age one. The problem is especially pronounced among black babies, who have a mortality rate three times their white counterparts.
DeWine has promised to triple the number of families served through home-visiting programs.