FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 6, 2016
Contact: Julaine Appling, President – 608-334-6435
Copy Available online here.
Wisconsin Family Action Responds to
Future of Family Commission Report
MADISON, WI – Wisconsin
Family Action President Julaine K. Appling today issued the following statement
in response to the recently released final report of the Future of the Family
“Wisconsin Family Action commends
Governor Walker, Secretary Anderson, and the members of the Future of the
Family Commission for recognizing that successful families are the foundation
of thriving communities and a prosperous Wisconsin. Having read the
Commission’s final report, we can say that while we have a different
perspective on certain points, there are particular areas on which we
agree–namely, the importance of encouraging and strengthening married families
and addressing the impact of social isolation.
“As noted in the Wisconsin Family Prosperity Index
(FPI) report we
co-authored with the American Conservative Union Foundation in June,
Wisconsin’s marriage rate ranks 44th in the nation. Given all the
research illustrating the strong connection between marriage and economic
prosperity, it just makes sense for Wisconsin’s leaders to prioritize and
encourage marriage. This has been a focus of Wisconsin Family Action’s
executive budget and legislative work over the years, and I’m glad to see the
Commission reinforce it.
“The out-migration crisis
currently facing Wisconsin is also addressed in our Wisconsin FPI report. More
Wisconsinites are leaving the state than are moving in. This only serves to
exacerbate the isolation of our families as extended family members re-locate
in search of better opportunities. Our leaders must do more to ensure that we
have the social and economic conditions necessary to keep people in the state.
“One omission of concern to
Wisconsin Family Action can best be described as ‘good fertility.’ The report
acknowledges what the research shows to be true—children of married parents do
better socially, academically, and economically. Instead of including recommendations for
encouraging childbearing in marriage, though, the Commission focuses solely on
preventing “bad fertility,” i.e.,
out-of-wedlock pregnancy. In fact, the emphasis on contraception even within
marriage serves only to compound Wisconsin’s declining birthrate and the
looming population crisis it portends.
“For at least a decade, Wisconsin
Family Action has sounded the alarm about our state’s forty-year
below-replacement birth rate, which over time will lead to what is called a
‘Demographic Winter.' This phenomenon
occurs when the death rate exceeds the birth rate resulting in an increasingly
shrinking population, which, as the Wisconsin FPI clearly shows, some Wisconsin
counties are already experiencing. State leadership must take steps to turn
this tide. This reality is already
showing up in our schools and our workforce.
“For the sake of Wisconsin’s best
natural resource—her families—and for the general prosperity of the entire
state, Wisconsin Family Action looks forward to working with Governor Walker
and the legislature to address these and other issues raised in the Future of
the Family Commission’s report.”
Family Action is a statewide organization engaged in strengthening, preserving
and promoting marriage, family, life and liberty in Wisconsin.