[United States Statutes at Large, Volume 124, 111th Congress, 2nd Session]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office, www.gpo.gov]

 
PROCLAMATION 8578--OCT. 4, 2010

Proclamation 8578 of October 4, 2010
Child Health Day, 2010
By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

The health and well-being of a child is one of our most challenging, yet
important, responsibilities, and we have an obligation to ensure that
all our children can live, learn, and play in safe and healthy
environments. On Child Health Day, we reaffirm the critical importance
of the quality health care, nutritious foods, clean air and water, and
safe communities our kids need to grow into strong and active adults.
Parents and other caregivers set an example of healthy living and lay
the foundation for our children's success. Whether providing nourishing
meals, attending regular check-ups, or encouraging outside activity,
they teach the habits and values for mental and physical well-being that
last a lifetime. However, the charge to protect the health of our young
people extends beyond the home to our classrooms, playgrounds, and
hospitals around the country.
Today, our children face a new public health crisis we must address as a
Nation, and we all have a role to play. In the last three decades,
childhood obesity rates have tripled, and this epidemic threatens many
young Americans, leaving them at risk for severe and chronic health
problems, including heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. My
Administration is committed to solving the childhood obesity epidemic
within a generation, and earlier this year I created a Task Force on
Childhood Obesity to examine interagency solutions and develop clear,
concrete steps on how to address this national health crisis. Along with
the Task Force, First Lady Michelle Obama's ``Let's Move!'' initiative
empowers parents and caregivers to help their kids maintain a healthy
weight and make healthy choices for their families. ``Let's Move!'' also
encourages young people to choose wholesome foods, increase their
physical activity, and develop life-long healthy habits. Child care
providers and schools also have an important part in strengthening
health and physical education programs and providing nutritious foods in
cafeterias and vending areas.
In America, no parent should have to agonize over finding or affording
health care for their child. To address this, the Affordable Care Act

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guarantees that children are eligible for health coverage regardless of
any pre-existing condition. This landmark law extends the Children's
Health Insurance Program, and requires basic dental and vision coverage
for children under all health plans offered in the new health insurance
exchanges beginning in 2014. It also expands our health care workforce,
including increasing the number of primary care providers who treat
children; forbids insurance companies from dropping coverage if a child
or family member gets sick; and helps ensure access to free preventive
services. As we mark these successes and the beginning of a new chapter
in American health care this year, we also celebrate the 75th
anniversary of the Social Security Act--including title V of this
milestone legislation, which supports maternal and child health programs
and services across the country.
Parents also should not have to worry about whether the conditions in
which their children grow and play are unsafe or unclean. Prenatal and
early-life exposures to allergens and environmental contaminants may
have detrimental lifelong effects. We must take action for our
children's and grandchildren's sake, and we must work together to reduce
risks from environmental exposure at home, school, and play areas.
Through coordinated efforts like that of the President's Task Force on
Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks to Children, my
Administration will continue to empower Federal interagency
collaboration to help ensure healthy homes and communities exist for our
children.
Children are our most precious resource. They are our joy in the
present, and our hope for the future. As loved ones and educators,
mentors and friends, we must do everything in our power to protect the
health and well-being of our Nation's children and the promise of their
futures.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of
America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and
the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim Monday, October 4,
2010, as Child Health Day. I call upon families, child health
professionals, faith-based and community organizations, and all levels
of government to help ensure that America's children stay safe and
healthy.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fourth day of
October, in the year of our Lord two thousand ten, and of the
Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-
fifth.
BARACK OBAMA