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Parents testify against governor's proposal to eliminate First Steps

February 9, 2005
By: Sharon Delgaudio
State Capital Bureau

Supporters of the First Steps program swarmed the state Capitol to urge the House Appropriation-Education Committee not to vote for Governor Blunt's plan to cut the program's funding. Sharon Delgaudio has more from the state Capitol.

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First Steps supporters argue that the program is the only program that addresses children's developmental problems before the child grows past the window of opportunity. Julie Dominique describes her experience with her son Bobby.

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"This is what First Steps does. It picks up where no one else is going to. I can't even imagine if we had not had that, those people there for us to help with Bobby, I can't even imagine where he'd be now.

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Dominique also said Missourians either have to pay now for First Steps, or they'll pay even more when these children reach school age.

Governor Blunt said in a press relese that the First Steps program isn't as effective as it coud be. Blunt says he is trying to find a program to replace First Steps.