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tv   National Governors Association Winter Meeting - Jamie Dimon and Childrens...  CSPAN  February 28, 2019 5:30pm-7:12pm EST

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>> nice to see you. >> i saw you out there in the audience. how are you, good to see you. i was wondering if you would be here. [ indiscernible conversation ]
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the national governors association hosted its annual winter meeting in washington, d.c. recently. up next, a conversation on jobs and the economy from that gathering. we'll hear from jp morgan chase ceo jamie dimon, then governor matt bevin and the first lady of louisiana. >> ladies and gentlemen, please welcome governor hogan, governor raimondo, and mr. jamie dimon. [ applause ] >> well, good morning, everyone. thank you all for being here. i hope everybody is enjoying the nga winter conference so far.
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i want to first of all begin by introducing my co-moderator and friend and colleague, the 75th governor of rhode island and the very first female governor in state history, governor gina remain on dou raimondo. >> thank you, good morning, everybody. >> in 2006, our special guest became the chairman of the board of jp morgan chase. he served as ceo and president since 2005. formerly served as president, chief operating officer. following jp morgan chase's merger with bank one corporation in 2004, at bank one he was chairman and chief executive officer. previously held numerous executive roles at citigroup,
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travelers group, commercial credit company, and american express. he's on the board of directors of harvard business school, chairman of the business roundtable, a member of the business council, and also serves on the board of trustees of the new york university school of medicine. so please join me in giving a warm nga welcome to jamie dimon. [ applause ] >> thank you very much. >> well, thank you so much for joining us for this discussion. let's go ahead and get started. first of all, so you led jpmorgan since 2004, including successfully leading the bank through the 2008 financial crisis and the recession that followed. and you've had, you know, an unparalleled perspective on the global economy. so i guess i would just like, i think everybody would love to
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hear your overall assessment of the state of the u.s. economy. >> okay. >> and how industries and workers are weathering disruptions and the rapidly changing technology and globalization. >> thank you. so thrilled to be here, thank you for inviting me. i'm going to speak frankly and openly about issues that face this country. the short term and long term about the economy, the short term is we've grown 20% in the last ten years which is anemic. it should have been 40. one of the questions you have to ask is why did it get -- has it been so slow in a normal recovery. we still are growing around 2%. you had this little scare in december. the fact is, household spending is still going up. wages are still going up. houses are in short supply. there's plenty of capital in the markets. consumer confidence has kind of come down from the top because of the shutdown and trade and all these various things. business confidence is still high. capital markets are wide open. the american economy is still chugging along.
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a lot of sentiment moves all over the place but the fact of the matter is it's chugging along. i also want to give a long term perspective. this is the most prosperous economy the world has ever seen and it will probably be true in the next 50 years too, because people get too focused on the short run. most americans don't fully appreciate, we have all the food and energy we need. we have the atlantic and pacific. and we have wonderful neighbors in mexico and canada. we have not had a war since 1 8 1848. i want to compare that with china which people think has an un-trammelled road to get ahead. they don't have a lot of food and energy. their neighbors are japan, north korea, south korea, india, pakistan, vietnam. it's a tough part of the world. they've had battle skirmishes with four or five of those nations since world war ii. they also don't have our universities. they don't have our democracy. they don't have a rule of law. huge amount of corruption in
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their state-owned enterprise, inefficiencies. we have it pretty good. my biggest frustration is the things that we're not doing to make it better for average americans. and most of the things where we're not doing better, i'm going to list them real quick, is, we're doing it to ourselves. it's not technology, it's not immigration, it's none of that. it's, we used to -- we put a man on the moon in eight years. president kennedy said man on the moon, eight years later, man on the moon. now, ten years to get a permit to build a bridge. there are 21,000 highway miles built. now it's almost -- i know some of you are doing a great job, but the pitfalls we put in front of you are inner city school, my wife is here working in the south bronx. our schools are failing inner city kids, half of them don't graduate. it's a national emergency. think of the loss of opportunity. among those kids are people who could have been governors,
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mayors, presidents, ail burn einstein. a lot of these kids can't have jobs because they're not job ready. forget banks. anyone who has to deal with it, and you all deal with it, it can be crippling. george mcgovern became a governor after he ran for president. it was in "the wall street journal." he didn't realize how much it cripples small business. it's corruption. it's local, it's licenses to become a barber, it's people slowing things down. i also think a lot of it is our own selfishness. businesses are very selfish. i know we spoke about the salt tax here recently. i'm with a lot of business people and they're complaining about the salt tax. 80% of the benefit of state and local taxes goes to five states and people making over $500,000 a year.
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the real estate people complain to me about the one thing that hurts real estate values a little bit, they got to keep carried interest, they got to keep interest deductibility, they got to keep capital gains transfers tax-free and they lost one little thing, they complain about it. this is all of us. governments, people -- we just don't get our own way and do what's right for the united states of america. we spend far too much time being parochial. i can blame businesses, i can blame politicians, et cetera. we fixed some of these things, which some of you have done, built infrastructure, created schools. this economy will boom and help a lot more people. >> there's a lot there to respond to. one of the issues we deal with as governors all the time is how do we make sure that the people who live in our state have the skills that are required to get a good job. i know that's something you've thought a lot about, every
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business executive does think about it. we've worked together on the new skills for youth program, we've used a lot of that to start apprenticeship programs, internship programs. as you think about ten, 20 years, in a changing economy, how do you think about meeting that challenge for your company and also, you know, more broadly? >> so i think it's a better owned company, it's actually rather easy, we can hire the best schools, pay what we need to pay, spend $250 billion a year directly training, half a billion dollars indirectly training. people are always being promoted from a teller to a branch manager. that's kind of training. the bigger issue to me is, if you go around the world, okay, 30% of our students go to college. 70% don't. that's true fundamentally in switzerland and germany. the unemployment rate, switzerland and germany, kids 17 to 24, is like 3%. they start apprenticeships.
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you're in tenth grade, something like that, one day at work, paid. two days next year, three days next year. you need x, you need y, and we need z. it has to be locally with mayors and cities, what do you need? we have to help train the people. my wife has a program to train tellers in community colleges. when they get out, they have jobs, $35,000 a year with medical. these are good jobs, they're starter jobs, stuff like that. we actually know it works. in france, the unemployment rate of youth is 20%. what we're trying to do, we're spending hundreds of millions of dollars around the world looking at this, is to disseminate the ideas you already do. but it's got to be local. this is not a huge federal program. this is your colleges, community colleges, businesses working with you. the businesses should say, i want to do -- i'm going to hire those hundred kids, i'm going to help train them, you certify them. community college in new york, they can go to college
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afterwards, having a job doesn't mean you can't go to college later. we know it works. in new york city there's a school called aviation high school, kids travel two or three hours to go there, their parents want them to go there. most of the kids are minority, come from poor neighborhoods. $60,000 a year to maintain small aircraft, almost all of them. we know what to do. we just don't seem to get out of our own underwear sometimes. >> well-said. >> there you have it, we don't get out of our underwear. so you have many of the nation's governors here with us this morning. what would you say are the three public policy changes that you would advocate for or recommend to us to help us grow the economy and better prepare our states for the future? >> i think one of the things that governors and mayors -- my experience, once they get that job, it's no longer about democrat or republican, which i personally don't give a damn about, okay? it's about jobs, schools, roads,
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hospitals, ambulance times. it's about helping americans, all of them. and i think business has to play a much more ambitious part of this. i don't think it's going to be done just by government. you need government, a civic society, people working together. but the most important ones, we got 40% of americans make $15 an hour or less. 15% make minimum wage. >> climate change! >> keep going. >> one of the things, we have to get more income for these kids. a lot of americans can't afford a 4 or $500 event, you know, if they have a health care event, they can't afford it. they don't have a rainy day fund. we have to get -- we have to get -- i would expand the earned income tax credit, et cetera. >> stop funding climate change! >> one of the questions, jamie, to this point, we were talking
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about that earlier, i think you've done a terrific job as a leader -- >> stop funding climate change! >> -- suggesting business has a role to play. because we all try to partner with business to say come to the table, help us out with these problems, invest in job training. >> and a lot of you do. it's more the federal government, which is just krirpkrir crippling. you look at what we can't get done. i'm the chairman of the business roundtable, 200 larger companies. it's policy and advocacy around tax trade, immigration, work skills, diversity, innovation, corporate governance to get people thinking more long term. we're trying to be nonparochial. a lot of businesses get involved but some don't. some businesses are short term focused. some have to be. if you can afford to do these things, that's great. i have to make jpmorgan healthy and vibrant for the communities,
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the employees. if i don't do a good job, i fail. i think i see peter shear there. some of the people at jpmorgan, we've done these work skills programs. we do them in cities. mayor duggan of detroit came up with this idea of, i can't fund -- my small minority businesses can't get the same funding sat white businesses get because we don't have family to fall back on. we started small in detroit, we tripled the one in detroit, we're doing it in south bronx. these programs work. i think businesses have to do it. anyone in government, business government and civic society working together, works. you see it in your state. what you guys both have done is exceptional. at the local level, it works better than at the federal level. i don't know how to get the federal level working right. it just -- we are -- we are -- between gerrymandering, politics, what we're doing to ourselves is a disgrace. i've mentioned the white variety
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of areas, education, infrastructure, you name it. companies want to do a good job, most companies want to participate. some just don't know, you should be unabashed about asking. when we work together, it works. when we don't work together, even jpmorgan does not want to get involved. you saw what happened, businesses, 160 million people work in america. 140 million work for business. and the thought that somebody can have a great society without fostering good business is not a good idea. some cities and states, they treat businesses so badly that they're going to lose, people are going to leave. not because they're not virtuous and moral, they just can't afford it. >> so a small business and entrepreneurship, it provides a critical path to economic mobility. and yet evidence would suggest that it's becoming more and more difficult to start and maintain a small business. so what are the biggest headwinds facing entrepreneurs
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today and small business owners, and what do you think they need to succeed and in particular, you know, i wonder if you can talk a little bit about some of the work you've done to -- on inclusive entrepreneurship and including -- we talked a little bit earlier about entrepreneurs, your entrepreneurs of color fund, which i know is expanding in our region, in the d.c./maryland market, which we appreciate very much. >> so small business, 28 businesses -- 28 million businesses in america, the biggest 2,000 do maybe half all capital expenditures, so they're important. this company would be worse off without boeing. we need these successful large companies. there are 20 million which are one person, think of nail shops, pizza shops. 8 million of all variations sizes. we survey a lot of small business people. i urge all of you, take ten business people to lunch and ask them questions. what they'll tell you is the
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onerous, excessive licensing regulations at the federal, state, and local level. if you want to be a barber in new york city, i think it takes three licenses. there are three different jurisdictions. you have to pay and you have to be trained. this training is six months. even if there's open jobs, you know, people can't afford to move to find the job because it takes too long to get the training even though they're doing it in another state. it's a form of sinecure. all the rules and regulations are killing the ones which are stifling bureaucracy that are not protecting people. obviously we have to protect people and companies should be held to be liable if they do bad or wrong things and pay for their mistakes. it's mostly that. and we've heard entrepreneurship. i would add the litigation system, okay, and the health care system. our health care system costs 18.5% of gdp. we have among the best ever pharma, medical, you name it, hospitals, people get in right away, emergency rooms. but we fail on wellness. we have too much obesity. drugs are overused and underused.
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end of life is 15%. it should be half of that. our medical costs are twice the average developed nation. and that is -- warren buffett calls it the tapeworm of american business. it will be a tapeworm. for lower paid individuals, they can't afford a deductible if they have a problem. like j pchlt mop morningamorgan deductibles for lower paid employees so they don't get this crippling $1,000 bill or something that in a month. small businesses, we have to make it easier for them to get medical insurance for their people and resolution the burden. it's not, by the way, access to capital, that's rarely the case. i do think for some community banks what are under a lot of pressure from regulators, they have cut back on small business lending. i do think we can open that spigot a little earlier. the entrepreneur of color fund, we go the extra mile and take an extra risk. we may not get the same returns,
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but it works. we're doing it for entrepreneurs of color, women entrepreneurs. we're going to seek out now, we're doing it in baltimore, we're doing it in rhode island, providence, we're seeking out, how can we do something different than we've done before. maybe we're earning some market return, but we're helping society. again, i think businesses should try to do that because this won't age well if we don't fix some of these issues. >> thank you. governor? >> i think we ought to turn it, we have a handful of governors here. >> we want to open it up to our fellow governors. anybody got some comments or questions or input? don't be shy. govern governor herbert? >> i'm never shy. here is the question. it's kind of an accusation that we hear a lot. the economy's doing well, most of the states feel like their economy has recovered and we're doing better, we're starting to
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feel that way in utah. but the accusation i hear all the time is, the rich are getting richer, the poor are staying poor. the middle class is shrinking and has a disproportionate amount of the tax burden. i would like your observation. >> >> everybody here people even those who are very left, some of that is actually correct. lower paid folks do not earn a living wage anymore and it used to be that if you were unskilled, you could get a job in a factory or something, construction and eventually earn a living rage wage. that might not be true anymore. some middle-class wages are going up a little bit if i was a politician, i would want a growth agenda because nothing pays for anything like growth. it pays for roads and education and better social outcomes, etc. i think we have to acknowledge that the lower paid are not getting enough money to make a
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living wage. it would be a better outcome of society if people had a job. the left side denigrates certain jobs. they denigrate the starting jobs . most people like working. you go to the average place, that may have been a starting job, that was the first rung on the letter for that person. most of the people who run these restaurants now started that way. they are proud of themselves and we've got to give dignity back to work. when you have more people working at less crime, less corruption, less opioids, more household formation so i think we have to acknowledge it and the issue is growth. i think the rich have made a lot of money, so if i was a democrat i think the democrats should acknowledge a lot of things the government did, did not work. they have failed and we spent billions of dollars on it and that the american public including democrats know that if you take more money at the
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state or federal level, what are you going to do with it as opposed to just going to your friends and family. so there is this notion that it's not being properly used, so democrats should acknowledge that and republicans should acknowledge we need proper safety for the poor, the sick, the old. we are failing to educate our kids. if you tax more which i think we will end up doing, i think it's unavoidable, let's make sure we have things that work as opposed to just more taxation and more bureaucracy and more finger-pointing and things like that. >> sticking with that point for a minute, i think we all agree, work provides dignity more than just a paycheck but the reality is, the changes in our economy are faster than we've ever seen. in the last recession, most of the jobs lost, those jobs just required a high school degree. since that time, most all the
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jobs created and i'm sure this is true of your company, in order to get a decent job, you need to have something more than a high school degree. maybe not a four-year degree, maybe not four-year college, but a credential, something. and yet the majority of americans don't have that, so what do we say to people who just have that high school degree who want a good paying job who can't feed their family on $12 an hour, how do we deal with that? >> technology is the best thing to happen to mankind. technology is why we live longer and we have this wealthy prosperous nation, it's why everything is better. if you don't believe me, go back 100 years. my grand parents were immigrants who came here with their shirts on the back and dirt. they didn't inherit any wealth and if you lived, if you got the one you might live to 50, but it is true that we are
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leaving behind segments of society that don't have the education. my wife has got 100 interns and kids going into various schools and internships where they will get well-paying jobs. companies do it, we train people all the time at the start of a job. again, it's going to have to be local in my other view is, people worry about this, so we have 8 million car and truck, taxi and truck drivers in america. if somehow ai is able to get self driving, boom, people making $65,000 a year out of work. that's not going to work really well and therefore we have to have a retraining and relocation, income assistance if it happens too fast. this has been happening our whole lives but it's possible to be too fast. at j.p. morgan we are looking today and we know ai will reduce the people and call centers and operating center so we are going to be really prepared to retrain people to do other jobs
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and even retrain them to get jobs in the company's so we know that in phoenix or in the city they need certain jobs and were going to train them to get another job and an equal paying job. it's not going to work if you have a family making 65,000 a year and there's an available job of 25,000. that's just not going to work. these things all go back to training, skills, apprenticeships, internships, lifelong education that will work for americans. >> >> sorry about that outburst, that was uncalled for, we appreciate you coming and sharing your thoughts with us. so regarding getting capital,
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as far as encouraging capital getting to our small businesses are minority businesses, what you did a very good job of explaining, however economy's move in the small entrepreneurs, is anything we can do from a state banking regulatory environment or a federal regulatory environment to ease the burden on large banks and our community banks whether it's your one capital ratios, or where you think the balance is there protecting the taxpayers in the insurance versus encouraging you know, access to capital in our small businesses? >> one thing i want to mention is you see these kind of things, we have the best, whitest, deepest most transparent financial markets ever. i'm not talking about big banks, i'm talking big ones and small ones. we move $6 trillion a day were part of that mosaic is venture
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capital, private equity, small business, small banks, and it is true, i'm very sad that it to a lot of small banks. they would tell you is the cost of regulation. they have more compliance officers and loan officers. it's the fear of passing off the local examiner. it's just they are told we don't want any more of these types of loans, it's the litigation cost if you're wrong, so a lot of banks, they stay away from anything that might cause litigation cost because it's so capricious and arbitrary. it's ruining self responsibility and the punishment doesn't fit the crime and local regulations, and again, we should applaud entrepreneurs. we should applaud small business people. we should applaud job creators. at j.p. morgan we have 5000 branches and going to put these big screens in all these mansions. to have these great small business people or governor
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talk to 50 small business people in every branch, that is 25,000 people and to talk about what works and what doesn't works. the other thing is we are doing this great work in detroit but we have people on the ground at a not-for-profit whose working with the entrepreneur about what they need to learn to get more traditional bank financing, budget, leases, how to sign a deal with the federal government. hiring people, where you place the branch, where you place the business to maximize traffic? a lot of these are due to entrepreneurship at the local level and then they change the regulations. >> in your response to governor hogan's question at the outset you mentioned that we are failing inner-city kids and you referenced your wife's great work in new york city, have you learned anything, i think it's a problem in every small town, city and large city across the country, have you learned anything through your work there that you can help us with
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with respect to our efforts to educating inner-city kids? >> we should send you some information, but what we know already is that internships, apprenticeships work. the business is to have it certified, it's got to count for college credit or high school credit and i don't believe in unpaid internships. i think if you can afford it it's unfair to have kids work for free. it's got to be the local level and you've got to get help from the community college. the community college like the deer but they won't certify the position so if you go to germany or switzerland, these kids, they get college credit for it. so it opens up all these horizons for them so it really is at the local level working with the schools and high schools and community colleges and we have to convert high schools back to not just
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learning about life, but a livelihood. we used to be very good at that and we had these vocational schools all over the country and they might teach welding or construction or electrical work. there are 7 million jobs open in america today and most of them are well-paying and they are not being filled. we've got to get cracking a bed because it would be a great thing to do so -- >> it's heartening to hear you talk about what j.p. morgan is doing as it relates to aim changes in actually making sure that workers are retrained even if they are not your own company. not enough companies necessarily are looking into that long-term social contract. how do we either the state or federal level incentivize businesses to be investing in worker training and even more so than they are investing in business equipment or robots?
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and also how do we deal incentivize the growth of independent contractors? >> one of the things, i do think this is a somewhat legitimate issue about what long-term thinking. i j.p. morgan, i'm never worried about quarterly profits ever. of course would make a huge amount of mistakes, but we built on the long-term. we have urged companies and i think the bot recommended us, don't forecast quarterly earnings. have quarterly numbers, the transition transparent but earnings is the tip of the iceberg. pricing is changing the weather changes. companies get their backs up against the walls and disappoint people. i think part of that is again, class-action suits and litigation. people are so course with this stuff, but i think businesses want to do the right thing. i think if you are overreacting to short-term, warren buffett
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talks about the earnings being a very important thing. he never worries about it, of course you have your pension plan and stuff like that. here's an inconsistency, a hypocrisy in america. a lot of state owned pension plans will come up to me and they want to know exactly what we are doing for the long run for my employees and is community, and we tell them. they want to know about compensation which i think is all legitimate. they then turn around and invest in hedge funds and things like that that get paid 20% of the profits of that year. so very often that's exactly the behavior they say they don't want themselves. in america this is a major thing, we've gone from 8000 public companies to 4000 public companies. we are driving them private because of all of these issues i mentioned. short-term's incentives and it makes it hard for companies to think long-term so we just got
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to bring back the notion of thinking long-term and explain it. larry fink at blackrock, blackstone, blackrock that we should describe what we are doing. we are opening four new branches, that is 4000 people directly. another 8000 people indirectly. we go in with all of j.p. morgan. we open a branch, philanthropy and education for people who need financial education, charity, we do the whole thing. it wasn't just the 25,000 jobs amazon was going to do, it's probably 100,000 job supporting it and they would've gone from low skill to high skill to consultants and lawyers to restaurants and barbers and construction workers and that is the shame. that's what they lost and the whole ecosystem that creates jobs and furthers interest. cities and states act that way,
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they're going to be long-term losers. i was in new york city in 1974 and we had a financial crisis and crime in all of these terrible things. 10 fortune 50 companies left the city in a five-year period. jcpenney went to texas, american airlines left, it was amazing. companies were just leaving and cities and states can foster an attractive environment and help you guys to the other parts. i think businesses are not to blame for these outcomes, i think they can do more to help fix the bad outcomes.>> what about the deal incentivizing or discouraging independent contractors? >> i think that is a valid point. our whole detroit effort started when we saw a corporate governance issue with j.p. morgan. he said i don't care about that, i care about detroit which had gone bankrupt yet. my workers are going to retire and they're going to lose their pension plans and he said the average pension plan for
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someone who is worked for 35 years is $20,000 and they don't get social security. i did not know that. i said that's terrible, we are huge bank in detroit and i said i'm going to help you. so we became friends and try to help with this huge effort for detroit for our hometown where we came from. you came to see me at one point complaining that we outsourced certain certain janitorial jobs and guards and we did. i'll meet with anybody, i'm not afraid to talk to anybody about anything and he said you did it and the guard is the same god who shows up. they get the same pay. you pay the independent firm two or three or $4000. the reason it is profitable for them and you is they took away their medical and i took back all of those guards, all of them. ap morgan did not need to make its profit off the backs of the medical stuff for our guards. some companies, by the way are not in that position, they can't afford medical so i'm very some pathetic.
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i tell all these people, all the do-gooders that it is much tougher and when you are trying to fight for survival there's a difference. in the meantime, companies can try to be really good corporate citizens. train our own people and don't outsource something. treat people with respect, j.p. morgan ourselves, we subsidize 90% people make under $60,000 medical, and then we make it free with health accounts etc. we make it free with health accounts etc. we gave these huge matches for a 401(k) and all of the money went to the wealthy made people. so i limited the matches for the higher paid people and i asked the question, why don't people put the money and if we give them free money. 40,000 people weren't putting money in and i did an analysis, why? they are all the people making $40,000 a year. they needed the money. it wasn't that they were done.
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so we started by putting $750 in their account. if you put more money in, we match that, too. to try to take care of the lower paid folks were critical to the success of j.p. morgan. the other thing people can do, these are the best ideas i can have. >> you mention all of those companies leaving new york and you mentioned amazon which we are working hard to try to steal over in maryland. what we have to do to get j.p. morgan?>> you did a good thing right from the start because you elected larry hogan. when you are a company, of course you want to go to places where you are welcome and they listen to you and you have an opening conversation to make it better and we have a great relationship with most of the states here. texas jobs are going like this, you know delaware, utah, you name it. it literally is to be a welcoming place and consistent. it's consistent because we have
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to go around the world. if governments are usually inconsistent you tend to stay away. think about parts of europe.>> we talked a little bit about this backstage and i think you and i both feel passionately about it and i think a lot of our audience would like to hear about this. the american public today is deeply divided along political lines and you have to navigate you know both to the court of public and opinion and your 250,000 employees i think in a private enterprise. how do you approach a collaboration and cooperation with the government in such a polarized time? >> obviously families the most important thing to me. my wife and my children, i have three daughters and four granddaughters, i don't know how that happened, but the next most important thing is the united states of america. it is still the shining city on the hill. if you don't believe me, spend a couple weeks on the road with me and other parts of the world, it's not even close. i am a huge patriot that way and i think that's what we need
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to do. focus on what is good for the united states and not always what is parochial and i forgot your specific question. >> about the polarization. >> o, it's just more federal government than most and i was try to listen to both sides and try to understand why they may be right. when i hear about inner-city schools, they are right, but slogans are not policy. we have to get much more about policy that gets done. you can get elected saying anything you want saying anything you want about the rich and the poor the taxes but if you don't get the roads fixed are the hospitals working and you don't get kids jobs, you will fail as a governor or mayor so i try to listen. i met with union leaders, i'm responsive when they complain about something like that. and we write extensively on our public policy. we educate the world about the
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economy, we go to mexico and argentina and how do you develop capital mortgage and entrepreneurship, so we want to foster very healthy economic environments and it is part of my job. i've never been conflicted ever. i don't this thing about that companies only care about shareholder value, that is just not true. most of the ceos i know would agree with me that we've got to do a great job for employees to do good job for customers. if i don't serve my customers right, they don't come back, and right is better, faster, cheaper and if were not good in communities, you don't want us there. we operate in like 2000 little cities around the world but i treated exactly the same as if you own the corner bakery store. that cornerback restore is a community citizen. they are higher kids in the summer, they get the ice of the front so someone doesn't break your leg. they participate in the local
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little league or church or mosque or synagogue because that is our community. that is how you teach people and i think just because you're big that means you should stop doing that. so i've never been conflicted between the true. if i don't build a healthy company, then it is just all talk. i have to have a healthy vibrant company first and then i can do these good things. our people love it by the way so all the things we talk about doing, we are doing really special things to advance black leaders and soured our company and our people love it. not only they do good job for customers but communities and they get to do volunteer hours so i think it lifts up everybody. >> governor sisolak? >> let me ask you question. what you think could be done better to enhance financial literacy in our schools. was lost a generation, they don't understand the cost of credit, budgeting process and then we throw them in the world without any foundation. >> when i was a little young
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ceo of banc one they asked me to go talk to kids in like third or fourth grade and i read them a little book and they don't understand what i'm talking about, we've got to teach it in schools. i would take in every high school, maybe start earlier, basic financial education. what is a rainy day fund. when do you need life insurance? what is the bank account, how can you avoid payday lenders? nutrition and health. like maybe walk a couple miles a day because those two things will be critical for the future society. we do it extensively but you can't like the lie, i think it needs to be done in churches and schools. we actually now on our app if you're a chase client, you can buy and sell stock for free and we give you for free tools you can look to use advertisements. see open up and you look at your credit score and were starting to educate how you can
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improve it. you can improve it by paying this next bill coming up on time. 10 million people signed up like that we haven't marketed it. people are dying to have it. have wine and cheese for single mothers who can bring their kids in and then educate about a rainy day fund. just a rainy day fund. just how you start an investment, what is a 401(k), so i think we have to do it. we are going to try everything but i really think it should start in the schools. >> you made a comment earlier and we all know that there are millions of open jobs, many people who want jobs and they are not getting matched up. some of it i find is that companies are still searching for people that have the four- year college degree when they don't actually need the four- year college degree to do that job. so, how do we deal with that? >> it is totally true.
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when people say something like that to me, and i don't know it, a study it, and i did, it's true. companies became lazy. they said college required, it was just an easy scale, and easy scheme, so think of tellers, it's not required. so we went back to j.p. morgan and took the college required off of tens of thousands of jobs. is not required. worse than that, a lot of college kids they don't become a teller, do you think they want to be a teller? probably not, so there's turnover. they are thrilled and they move up the ladder. like the guy, my wife visits a room and a woman stood up and said those are just started jobs, they are dead-end jobs and he stood up, he was an attractive black man and he said, ma'am, i started as a teller at j.p. morgan chase and i am now a
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managing director and i'm responsible for hiring 40,000 people a year and i'm so proud of what i've accomplished and what this company has done for me. people like that have got to tell the story.>> last question. >> and also we went to the fdic and we told them we can't hire felons at a lot of jobs in our industry by regulatory statute effectively. she changed it. we are hiring felons now, in fact peter scheer was in detroit yesterday and there was a picture of him with a felon now working for us to say thank you. give people a chance. if you have paid your time in society, have a second chance. there are all things you can do. >> good for you.>> housing affordability, there's lots of state programs and federal programs and stuff for bullock has a first time homeowners
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savings account where you can save money tax-free now obviously if you are in a state without income tax is not helpful, if the federal government would do it it would be more helpful. what you think the solution is to the housing affordability issue? >> one of our economists did a study that showed that affordable housing is least affordable and least available in the places that have the most land use restrictions. so all regulations have made it very hard for housing. the other thing is, we actually did a study and it showed that if you had a rainy day fund, the chance for your mortgage to fold is like 20% if you don't. if you have the exact same credit stuff, so teaching people education is important that we messed up the mortgage business. we massively overreacted. there are 3000 federal state and local origination and servicing requirements. we send you a bill, we thousand, because of that, mortgages are
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less available less affordable and expensive. most places have gotten out of fha lending because of litigation behind it. the people getting hurt are self-employed, immigrant, prior default, younger, and poor. and these are not subprime. these are just not giving them a chance. look at your local zoning rules , education, those will get more people living in homes.>> so we are just about out of time. i want to thank you so much for joining us, this is been a fantastic panel and i appreciate the way you've been so open with us and covering a range of topics. i will again thank you for your partnership on the new skills for youth program, it's been fantastic. those governors who don't know about it, i encourage you to learn about it. we started internships, apprenticeships, career technical education and i can't
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thank you for your partnership. with that i would like to give you a couple minutes to offer any closing remarks. >> the only closing remarks is, we can fix all this. i don't know exactly how to fix the federal system but we can fix all of this if we get a room and we listen to each other and we analyze and come up with really good policy and you have to convert that policy into educating and leading the population with you. that's obvious in my expertise, but that's the kind of stuff that works. the last thought obviously, i appreciate the fact that i know a lot of the governors in this room, you've done a great job as communities, it's great you are doing this because i hope when you get together privately you shed the democratic republic and thing and just worry about what works for america because we could make it a better country for everybody.>> thank you. over half million on pete children are currently in foster care.
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let me give you guys a couple of seconds to sit down. or not. my name is charlie baker, i'm the governor of massachusetts and on the vice chair of the health and human services committee and i want to welcome you all to this conversation about child welfare specifically rethinking child welfare and the one thing i would say about that is, we are constantly in the process of rethinking the way we deal with support and work with some of the most at risk families and kids in our states. they represent in many cases, the difference between opportunity and no opportunity
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for kids who in many cases through no fault of their own end up in a particularly difficult spot. i just want to make a couple of quick comments before i introduce the chair of the committee oregon governor kate brown. the first is, i think one of the most important things we need to do to be successful in the space is recognize that our social workers who do much of the work day today with families and with these kids need to be supported and that means making the investments that are required to ensure that they are managing a reasonable number of cases in a reasonable number of families. the second is to make sure they have the clinical support that they need to support them as they make decisions with respect to the needs and the concerns and in many cases, psychological and medical issues that these kids and their families are often dealing with and to the extent that we can peel a lot of the administered fork away from the social workers so they can really focus on doing social work and not in doing paperwork, we are going to dramatically improve their
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ability to do the work that they need to do. the second thing, when we try all of those things by the way are things we worked pretty successfully and in massachusetts for the second thing we need to be better at his understanding and recognizing the role and the importance of placement and permanence when it comes to these kids. the more we can do to give them a sense of certainty about the future, the better off they will be and whether that is working harder to develop kinship opportunities where kids who have a mom or dad or both who have problems and abstaining with or being supported by and living with a family member or ending up dealing with circumstance of situations where we move kids in a reasonable timeframe from some sort of state of uncertainty to a more certain state with respect to adoption or some other permanent relationship, the more likely they are to be successful and then the third thing i want to mention is the work that we can
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all do to learn from each other with respect to those things that have ultimately determined the longitudinal success of these kids. historically, states have not done a great job with respect to actually tracking, quote, what happens with respect to a lot of these kids and their families. the more we do to actually track this over time so that we can figure out which things really make a difference for them and for their families, the better off we are all going to be. this is a terrific panel and i think we are all going to learn a great deal from it but as i said at the beginning, if you are not rethinking your child welfare policies and your child welfare programs every year, you ought to be because this is the sort of thing where there is constant room for improvement and constant room for chance and opportunity for kids. i say all the time that talent is evenly distributed, opportunity is not, and the more that we can do to help make sure that these kids and their families have those opportunities, the better off they and we collectively will
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be and with that i want to turn it over to my tagteam partner on this committee for the last several years, oregon coat governor kate brown. we have rotated in chairing and by sharing the health and human services committee. she is now the chair and i want to introduce her now. kate.>> thank you governor baker for your extraordinary leadership on this issue and so many others. good afternoon everyone, i am honored to be here with you this afternoon and very excited about this panel. as governors, we have a truly unique opportunity to re- envision the way our child welfare system works and ways to better aid the needs of our children and families. for me this is a very personal issue. i first started practicing law in the juvenile justice arena representing children and families in the foster care system. i then continued my work in
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this arena as a legislature and now i have this opportunity as governor. in my state, we have one and half times the national average number of children in our foster care system, so we are tackling those issues within our child welfare system, but as governor, i'm really focused on how we can address the real causes, the reason why we are seeing so many children come into the foster care system. i am delighted to be introducing our panel that has been, that our experts in the area and that are really focused on reducing the number of children safely that are in our foster care system and hopefully better serve our children and families throughout the united states. so our moderator is doctor jeremy : mom, he's an author, advocate, an expert in child welfare and juvenile justice. he is the president and ceo of children's village, which cares for children through family
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support, community engagement, and short-term residential intervention. shawn anders is a renowned writer and director who recently turned his personal experience with foster care and adoption into the hollywood film instant family. starring mark wahlberg and rose byrne. governor bevan has made significant strides in kentucky. streamlining and improving the child welfare system with particular focus on improving adoption timelines and serving children and families impacted by the opioid crisis. and first lady edwards, she is focused on transforming the foster care system in louisiana , particularly focusing on connecting foster parents with community support and fostering cross agency collaboration. i'd like to welcome our panelist to the stage, please give them a round of applause.
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>> okay. thank you for this opportunity first lady edwards and governor bevins and shawn, thank you for joining us before i ask you a few questions and we start talking about the work we need to do together, let me set the stage. as a practitioner, when it comes to helping children, the persistent team in the united states has been we often needlessly separate children from the one thing that they love and need the most, which is their parents, their siblings, and the family. in the united states, family separation has always been disproportionate. poor families and those families that society values the least are at the greatest
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risk of losing their children. few of us in this room would ever lose our children to the foster care system. in the early 1800s in new york city where i work, the children we served, the ones that were separated were initially jewish and non-english speaking german immigrants. by the late 1800s and well into the pot first part of the 20th century, they were largely i read irish catholic. today and for the last two decades, most jurisdictions have seen an overrepresentation of black and native children in foster care. black children into that system faster, stay longer, and often exit with the worst outcomes. no question about that. in 2017, about 23,000 children aged out of foster care when they turned 18 or 21 depending on the state they live in. we believe another 25,000 aged out in 2018 and at least the same number will age out this
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year. let me tell you something about these kids that are aging out. many who age out spend at least 5 to 7 years in the foster care system prior to aging out. the lucky ones, we think about 50% of that group, actually returned to the very same families that we kept them away from because that's all they have. the other 50% are struggling to survive, some are couch surfing as we spoke about earlier. our girls are in very risky transient relationships and they almost all remained dependent on government and charity. let me also add that among this group and for this group that ages out, we promise them a family and we never gave them one. we never did. many others never knew family. they actually came of age in group homes.
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including places like the children's village. 70 to 75% of the children that are separated from family are removed for neglect and not physical or sexual abuse. i know the general public often thinks that our kids are being removed for physical and sexual abuse, that is not true. parent substance abuse is growing because of the opioid crisis, that the circumstances of neglect are more closely associated with poverty and abject poverty. that is it. so let me conclude my remarks by making two comments. children do best in families, we are here to talk about that, the importance of family. in this great nation we have more than enough families to care for all of our children who are moved into foster care in chilled including children with complex needs, no doubt about it. but one thing we must do and i hope we will get to talk about it a little bit more, we must begin treating those amazing
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foster families that step up as true partners. we do a horrible job at that. we can do more and if anyone is interested, the chance campaign talks about the things we can do together. with their help and only with their help can we transform the system. i will also add that group homes and institutions can play a role and they are needed, but they can never be a place where kids grow up. the key to healing as we all know is the love and belonging a family, that is it. or as my mother often reminds me, relationships heal, that is the magic bond. relationships heal. children should never belong to government or to a charity, even a charity like children's village. government and charity could never be a substitute for the love of family. we are also on the cusp of some fundamental change, it is called
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the family first prevention services act that president trump signed in 2018. while not perfect, the family first actually changes the perverse financial incentive that existed in federal funding because until family first was signed, the only way you could draw down funding, the state could draw down funding was to actually remove a child from a family, so unless you remove the child from the family, you are not eligible for funding. with family first, while not perfect, we think we can begin to build that preventive base, that early intervention that our communities so need and maybe the number of children that are removed for neglect can begin to drop faster than we have begun to see and when separation is needed and there will be times, there are always times when we have to separate kids, family first will allow us to build a family support network to keep them rather
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than an institution or group home. that is the context for the conversation. let me ask you a couple of questions. first lady edwards, you put your reputations out on this, right? it is the least sexy of topics that you can pick. hardware flare, things about a run. the media stories are never about the good things you do in child welfare, it's always about what went wrong. we admire your leadership. what are you most proud of, first lady edwards? what are you most proud of in louisiana, you stuck your neck out and said you're behind this you often talk about our kids. >> one of the things i'm most proud of is my husband who went in and said he would not tolerate cuts to dcfs and that one statement that there would be no cuts to dcfs really gave the caseworkers and all of
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those people involved in that program, gave them a backbone and that really started the trickle down where more people were listening and it gave them hope, really, because the caseworkers themselves, we all know that they don't get paid enough and they do some amazing work and more hours than we can even imagine, but to give them work and really start equipping them with what they need through even more programming and things that help them, but that and the fact that we started our louisiana fosters website, we had two summits at the mansion to bring in people from all over the state to sit at the table and discuss what things we can do to change and just starting a dialogue and that is what i'm most proud of. >> that's great. governor bevan? >> limit just say one thing to everybody in here, thank you for being here for the governors were sitting here, for those of you that are here as well because you have the option of walking out of the room and not paying attention to this. this isn't necessarily a sexy
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topic, there's no political constituency that is served by addressing this. most of the people we are talking about, the vast majority of the children themselves are completely ineligible to vote and i would submit that there are a few less sexy things you could address but we won't go there now but the bottom line is this. this is something that has got to be addressed. we have in america 450 some odd thousand children in the foster care system. it's a little more than 1% of our population and to your point, if we can't find within ourselves the ability to come alongside and be part of the solution, then we are not making a very valiant effort and all the things we wrestle with, not the least of which is where we find funding for all of these various programs, they come at the expense of not fixing this issue at the front end and not wrapping around what you describe in terms of early intervention as the wrapping around of a troubled situation, bringing the services that we always have, but are not always well applied. they often are applied at the end of the funnel of trouble instead of at the top and and
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so i just am grateful to each and everyone of you and i want to draw your attention to one thing before i forget, at each one of the tables of the governors and we have some more in the back of the room that will be given out is a one page, it's just 10 things that every governor and anybody who cares about this issue in any state role should know. including how many things the kids are in your foster care system. what is the average wait time for someone to be adopted. how many people are living with family in what is often referred to as kinship care or maybe something else. how many such things exist in your state. if you don't know these 10 basic things, you are really failing to appreciate both the cost and opportunity cost and the one thing you mentioned and i will touch on real quick and then we can move to the next topic, you mentioned the cost to society of these young people once they age out.
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the average young person who ages out of foster care at the age of 18 without having a permanent family will cost, it's been estimated and i think it's probably conservative, more than $300,000 per person over the course of their life utilizing services that if we gave them the opportunity to be the solution and not the problem could have been reversed. 34% of those who age out at the age of 18 will have had an adverse interaction with the criminal justice system by the time they are 19. 19 years old. for women and you alluded to it, it's almost a statistical given that their lives will be taken advantage of, that they will be trafficked or abused, that they will end up living in poverty as will their children. we are failing at a rate and to a degree that we cannot afford, literally, financially or
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otherwise, societally emotionally or morally, to fail. we cannot afford it. this is a problem when it is 1% of our kids that we have the absolute capacity to resolve this and at a fraction of the price of actually fixing it once it is broken at the bottom. the final timing thing i will mention that you alluded to and we talked about wrapping around and helping families, one thing i would challenge, it's not necessarily agreeing with you but challenging the notion of, there are some instances where the family, the biological family is not the best solution for the child and the earlier and quicker and more definitively and permanently that is determined in the development of that child, the better for all concerned and so this again is maybe something we could talk about a bit more.>> we agree, we think there are times that that decision needs to be made early. it is not a perfect science oh. we've got to work really hard at getting this right in those
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occasions we should also expand our search to extended family first before we go out so there's plenty of room here for an improvement, governor. thank you. the governor and the first lady both set us up to talk about aging out teenagers in the system. you capture the stories so well in your movie and you introduce such humor, tell us about the teenagers. you've met some, you and your wife, you had some interactions in the system, you went on to be adoptive parents for three siblings. we are we failing with our teenagers and why are we feeling so often? why is it that people are so afraid of our teenagers?>> that is the perfect question and i'm obviously not an expert, i'm a filmmaker and an adoptive parent. >> you are a great storyteller. >> thank you. i'm also the only person here
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wearing jeans. this lowers the bar for my qualifications. but the last thing you said there, why are they afraid? and that, i can't even stress enough how huge that is, when you talk about all of these, everything else that we are doing almost falls underneath that. people are afraid of kids in care. i was. my wife and i went to an adoption fair, you saw a little clip of a version of it that's in the movie, we did not want to go anywhere near the teenagers because we were scared and we thought we are barely ready to be parents, let alone to be parents of a teenager and as it happens in the movie, we wound up meeting the 16-year- old girl who you could just tell there was something kind of amazing about her, we met her brother and sister and with a lot of fear and trepidation we wrote them down on our sheet and we were a match with them.
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in our true story that did not come to fruition because those kids have been in care for about four years and they were very much holding out hope that their mom was still coming for them and they decided to refuse, because it was an adoptive placement and they decided to refuse the placement. then they called us a short time later and said by the way, there's these other three siblings and those are my kids who i love dearly and who are the best thing that ever happened to me, but when it came time to make a movie, i really wanted to have the story of the teenager in the movie because i knew that where the need was there and so in order to tell that story honestly, we sat down with a lot of families and a lot of kids and a lot of kids who are now grown who were adopted as teenagers and many of them became part of our filmmaking process and i guess the main message and i want to take up too much time, but anything in your individual pr efforts where you can get away from grim statistics and all of these things that frighten people and just make people get
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feelings of pity and fear and trepidation when they think about these kids, anyway that you can focus on stories and let people tell their stories and let the kids tell their stories, because when a kid comes out and tells, who roots for a kid more who roots for any character more than a child who is overcoming adversity and goes on to do great things? anyway, any chances you have to tell those stories and just make all of us less afraid of these kids, that will go a long way. >> thank you. let me switch this up a little bit. first lady edwards, we were speaking, you spoke about your workforce and that's not a question we had planned to get into, but are you comfortable talking a little bit about the workforce? we have people on the front lines making tough decisions and taking massive risks. sometimes losing their entire career when things go wrong, and we need our governors and
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our first ladies and our leaders to stand behind our work first while demanding accountability and you have done a pretty incredible job in your state in driving that message forward. can you describe what you are doing and what you are seeing and other things we should take away from this? >> i think when our governor put our secretary of department of children and family service in that position, that was a big move because she had been in the system and been working with it was for so many decades, so it brought so much to that office and so in that regard, so just dealing with the caseworkers and i mentioned earlier, giving them what they need, the training that they need, some of you have heard of tvr i training, training them, but also helping them train other people that are dealing with the child, whether the teacher or person in the
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classroom. you know the everyday teacher doesn't understand the foster child maybe in a room of 25 and how to deal with that child and how to be a support system for that child, but getting, working with our caseworkers and really lifting them up in their profession, i think we've been able to reduce the turnover from 23% to 13 justin two years so that's pretty big. >> to all of you, that is a stunning statistic in our field. thank you. thank you mrs. edwards. thank you for being willing to be able to stand behind the workforce because of strong workforce is the only way that we can keep and support those kids and those foster parents. governor bevan, you say a lot of interesting things but there's some things you say that resonate with me, you have questioned governments ability to get this job done. in fact i heard you say why would we demand and insist the government be the solution in this child welfare situation when it never has been and i
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was reminded of my first experience when i was appointed at children's village, i was so excited to bring my mom who has been my inspiration to see my new position and she walked around this massive campus, 200 acres right outside new york city, beautiful and we walked around and as we went home, she said, son, that is terrible. do those kids actually grow up there? are you in charge of this? and she's the one that reminded me, she said look, government and charity can never be a solution to this. you have private partners in kentucky that you are working with, what are your expectations of them? >> the reality is government does have a role. everything i said i do agree, children should be raised by families, not by the government
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. the government has a role to facilitate an environment in which that is possible to incentivize this, to reward this and something you touched on that you all have done in louisiana that is outstanding that we try to do as well in my very first budget address, raises to all the social workers and acknowledge them, single some of them out, invited them to be there, talked about their stories. why? because they are struggling. this is a thankless, underpaid, emotionally demanding job and they feel sometimes frustrated by the inaction of people in positions like ours. in acknowledging this and rewarding them and encouraging, you asked about what kind of partnerships we look for and i'm going to brag on one that's not in our state because i've always been amazed by it. if you go into any jordan's furniture in new england and in massachusetts, you walk into this, it is a place that is well-known up there. they have these amazing used to be books and now video displays of kids and you see kids that
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are just looking for a family to love them and you see their stories and you get a backdrop. these are people, i don't know the government ever asked them to do it. i would bet it didn't, but this is a private company who took it upon themselves to say, what is our role to be a good corporate citizen? to stand in the gap, so we do have others as well in kentucky , one thing i did as well, you made a great point about marketing and pr. we just elevate this, the solution exists. it exists in this room and with everybody we know. it does. the reality is, how is it that we make people aware of the situation? one thing i did when everyone of us is governors once a year gets up and tells the people in our state how things are going, it's usually us standing there and everyone trying to stay awake and clap at the right times and wait until we are done and we tell about what things and knocking a little bit, truth be told these things tend to be fairly static. i actually showed a big picture on the screen while i was doing
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this and it showed a picture of the family, a mother or father and three kids and everyone of them had a number on their t- shirt and the numbers ranged from 900 something to some four digit number in the next lane to people, that these were the number of days that these individuals had each waited to get to resolution as it related to either their desire to adopt or their desire to be adopted. it was ridiculous. it was 3 to 4 years each and yet there was a 100% desire on both ends to make it happen and this was kind of shocking and sobering to people but then i literally had that family come in wearing those t-shirts and walk right up and take over my state of the commonwealth address and speak to the entire elected assembly in the commonwealth of kentucky. do you think that had a pretty powerful impact on making this and elevating the awareness of the 138 men and women who will pass laws to make change? you bet. far more than anything i could have ever done. in the next couple weeks after
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that, we passed one of the most comprehensive childcare bills in the history of america. it is house bill 1 from 2018 in kentucky. look at it, it's not perfect, there is no perfect anything, but there are things in it that if you are not doing it, i would encourage you to copy it and if you have ideas, we can steal from you, please tell us, but hp 1 2018 is how you put this out and get things done and it breaks down the barriers of time so that we can get these kids to your point in the impetus of this question to the homes in the institutions that are going to turn them into productive citizens. >> all of my prepared questions are gone because the governor and the first lady keep driving this conversation the way it should be. let's talk about storytelling and changing the narrative. governor bevan, you took a chance, you got those t-shirts printed and you relegated the
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discussion. shawn, you are the storyteller, you bring this to life, you bring humor and reality together. what can we do more of? what are in telling the story, because the media stories don't tell the story, right? they tell about things that did go wrong. often human tragedy that is scary. something we could not have been told no matter how hard we work together. things do go wrong. you know the system what do i need to hear from you? >> the stories around foster care tend to fall into two baskets. either the gram, you should do something be, because they are so terrible. things like seeing a real family in front of people,
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sharing their stories. what i can't stress enough is involved former foster alumni in whatever programs you have. whether they go on to do great things, like play for the patriots, or someone like tiffany had-ish who can get in front of the world and speak candidly. anytime these kids can own their story. there is so much shame around these kids and anytime they can on their story and say, you know it, i was in this situation from no fault of my own. i got tossed around from family to family, i have issues to work out from it but it made me stronger and here is what i am doing with my life now. when people can see that, it makes the kids believe, i don't have to fall into the stereotype of a kid lost in the gears of society and equally as
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important, it makes the general population see them differently and not be quite so afraid of them. if you tell somebody, you know what, i saw this movie, saw this family, and it inspired me to get involved in the foster care system. instead of saying, i don't know if that is a good idea, that they might be supportive. we were talking earlier that one thing i have been saying all over the country is that if you get pregnant and go to a dinner party and tell people you are expecting, nobody says is that a good idea? that kid could grow up to steal your car one day. i'm not sure you should do that. instead it is like it is going to be nothing but ponies and rainbows, yet if you get involved in the system, the first place people go to in their minds. anything we can do to change that. one of the things i want to say, the ad council has been working on new ads around foster care and they are doing
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great work. very compelling. i saw one that was 30 seconds long and i was in tears. >> thank you. you've done a lot of this work -- >> i wanted to add to that about the children and young people presenting. we started the louisiana institute of children and families. a great group of people in louisiana started that off of a national group. to have these young people come during session, walk around and talk to the legislature, get in front of them and be in committees and talk about aging out and raising it to 21, it is powerful. their own experiences, that is stellar. for them to say, i have been in 20 different homes. now, i am handed a blue folder that says here you are, it is nice knowing you and you are
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out on the streets. it is nice for them to come and present that and talk to the people who make the decisions. it is extremely powerful. >> speaking of, we have a gentleman here who we met through the course of meeting the movie. adrian grew up in the foster care system in his home state of ohio, he is part of a youth advisory board that is amazing, that i think everybody could learn something from, where they get foster alumni together to advise on a variety of topics. feel free to chat him up. >> did you have something? >> let me make a point on that, too. these sound like repetitions on a theme. my wife and first lady started something that sounds kind of cool and would work in every state. it is the first lady's youth leadership council.
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it is inspired by folks like this. one of the first things that was done, we said to them, what are we not doing? from your perspective, how are your needs not being met? the first two things they brought forward are now the law in kentucky and i bet it is the case in many of your states. kids in the foster system, without the approval of their birth parent who may or may not choose to or be in a position to give permission for them to get a driver's license at 16, could not even be considered until they were an adult and these kids couldn't even get a drivers license. that is insane and i guarantee it is in a number of your state already. for good intentions, but no good reason. they said why can't we drive, we can't get jobs, we can't have a life. they brought that forward, that was taken care of. google it.
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it is not available in every state. it should be. in short measure it allows someone who is not family but might be a trusted coach or a teacher or a neighbor or whoever, for a temporary period of time with no financial or legal specifically mandated responsibility, be able to provide for that child on an interim basis when the child might be on parole or going to rehab. the ability to expand in the gaps. and that in the drivers license bill have changed the lives of so many. bring these kids in and have them talk to legislators and things get done. the other thing, too, about the voices. there is a guy in kentucky who owns a large hvac dealership. he was a foster care kit. there is someone like him in every one of your states. find someone who has been there, who has been blessed
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like you have and is written on and done wonderful things. give them the opportunity. they will be great advocates and they will find other folks who can be partners in this, because the solutions are out there. we need to empower people with the ability to get plugged in. >> we have about 10 minutes left. i want to jump off something you said and i am going to ask you the question first, governor bevin, and then you first lady edwards. these kids come into care through no fault of their own. they get labeled as bad, as broken, as troublemakers. we need to own some of that, because we are the ones who take them away from their family. governor bevin, you have a large, inclusive family. you adopted -- >> for of our nine children. >> four of your nine children.
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i am a parent of three, i know there is nothing easy with kids. was there anything instructive and you -- that would remind us that these kids are normal kids that want to be loved unconditionally by at least one person. somebody to love them. talk to us about it and first lady edwards i want you to think about your own children and talk to us about what you do and what the governor does. >> i will keep it tight, because it is true. people's responses are to be afraid of teenagers. if you've ever had a teenager, it doesn't matter if they were born to you or not, you are probably afraid of them at some time. they don't come with the manual, rather born to you or adopted. with adopted you have an awareness of what is coming more than if they are born to
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you. to that end, what kids need is someone to love them. it is in short measure. more than 10 years ago my wife and i tried to adopt a child out of the foster care system. to make a long story short, at the end of more than a year and multiple checks and home studies and inspections and thousands of dollars sent all over the place. sometimes because something expired and you had to do it again. it was insane. at the end of all of that we were told that you already have five children, this is enough because this child would be the sixth child and she wouldn't get enough attention. it is better for her to stay in the system. she was 11 years old. she's been in 14 homes. she is an adult somewhere that probably has not turned out well.
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there was no logic. this is the first political job i've ever had. i was nowhere near the political world. but i remember at the time thinking how outrageous that a family that could take care of five would be deemed unable to take care of six and it is better for that child to end up with nothing as a result and i thought something should be done about it. this is it. we are it. you are it. we can do something about this at the end of the day and the final thing i will say about this is, yes, nine is a lot. the governor has eight children, he knows a little bit too, as do some others in this room. of course it is a lot. but having three or more children, it is the parenting equivalent of terminal velocity. you hit a certain speed, that's it. once you have more children, which is three, you are there. the only thing that will really change in your life with
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absolute certainty is what you drive and the cool factor of what you drive will go down rapidly. that said, nothing else really changes. so it is 100% doable and i would say this in closing. if you're not in a position to adopt or you're not in a position to foster, you know somebody that you could come alongside and help with an encouraging word, with a meal prepared, with an offer to be their backup so they can have a date night. with the ability to say listen, she has three kids the ages mine were three years ago, i have a closet full of stuff. why don't you come over? little easy stuff. this is so easily fixed if we all get engaged. is it a lot, sure? and let me say the true secret is it looks easy because of my wife. i get to make it look easy, she is the mother of nine children, god bless her. >> how many points does he get
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for that? that is a lot of points. >> speaking of teenagers, until our oldest turned 20 a couple of months ago, we had 16 or 17 teenagers in our home at one time. some of them born to us. six of them girls. it can be done. >> first lady edwards, every time i hear you speak you describe our children. you never forget to do that. talk to us about that. why is it so important to you to capture that image? >> because they are our children. you are talking about people that can wrap themselves around them. at any given time we have more than 4000 children in foster care in our state and i always say we have over 4000 churches. if every church would recruit one family within that church and that one family wrap themselves around that child,
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we could do amazing things. we have a group in new orleans and their church, they are a faith-based community. they were putting families within the church and the church wrapped themselves around that family who is the adoptive family. other programs. open table is doing remarkable things in our state within the church. so, getting people to wrap themselves around those foster parents and giving them the help and support they need, that is a big part. just to encourage, one of the things that came out of our summit and our website was to have a place, a network in place, where wonderful nonprofit groups. we have go bags. of course we spell it different than everybody else. they are doing amazing things, collecting things in a bag so when the child is taken in the
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middle of the night, they have a bag of goods and things they can take with them. just networking and letting people know these things are available. we wanted to have a place where everybody could go and say, how can i help? i can't foster a child but i could help with resources or tutoring or lessons. little league or dance. everyone can be part of this equation, they just have to find out where they fit. >> thank you. let's take a minute each. what is the take away? how do we change? >> there is one other thing i wanted to mention that we are working on right now with a group of foster alumni. we are creating a logo that is like a pride logo that we will roll out in the next couple of months. we will try to bring this thing nationwide and hopefully worldwide. right now, kids in care carry a
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lot of shame. a lot of needless shame. they are so strong, so tenacious, so resilient, and they never get credit that these things that unfortunately come from a very difficult place. when you are battling against great odds, you also cultivate great qualities that you should be able to be proud of. thank you. i'll talk to you about this, for sure. thank you, all of you who are here to talk about this. we want to bring this out so kids can have something on a hat, on a t-shirt, wherever, in a conversation. so instead of being ashamed of who they are, they can say this represents where i come from and i'm not ashamed of it and i'm happy to tell you my story. >> thank you. governor bevin, 30 seconds -- >> i would simply say thank you for being here. if you think nothing can be done about this, you are right.
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i beg to differ and think something can be done about this and we will. we are pouring all in in kentucky. we are happy to share anything we are doing with any of you and we are happy to learn anything you would like to share with us. this year, in 2019 in kentucky, every one of you is going to be invited to a summit that will involve a whole lot of people that you know from the world that you come from who care about this and are pouring in. that will be an attraction for people who want to seek solutions to trafficking and adoption and foster care needs. we will have a number of summits and meetings in kentucky. we want every governor to come. you will find this time well spent. we will be concentrated in this effort on the bottom line is, let's get out and fix it. and thank you so much for having this. >> we started qpi, the care initiative.
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instead of piloting it statewide, that has been a game changer. so, that has been so helpful. one of the things i said, the children, the foster children are our future and if we are not investing in them, we are not investing in our future. it is a no-brainer. so i'm excited to be part of this and elevate the conversation and bring awareness and make it less intimidating, like you said. especially when it comes to teenagers. just bringing the awareness and educating people. >> i think you just said it. thank you. thank you, everyone. ♪
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this weekend, book tv will be live from the 11th annual tucson festival of books. from the grounds of the university of arizona. starting saturday at noon eastern, featuring republican strategist with his book, everything trump touches dies. then shane bauer with his book, a reporter's undercover journey into imprisonment. then, professor and author greg brandon with his book, the end of myth. from the frontier to the border wall in the mind of america. on sunday, our live coverage continue starting at 3 pm eastern with the book parkland, birth of a movement. then newsweek national
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political correspondent with her book, golden handcuffs: the secret history of trump's women. and author aaron piper with her book, a girl's guide to missiles, growing up in america's secret desert. watch our live coverage of the 11th annual tucson festival of books this weekend on book tv on c-span2. this weekend on book tv, author and political commentator heather mcdonald and former fbi deputy director andrew mccabe. sunday at noon eastern on in depth, with our live conversation with heather mcdonald. she will take your calls, facebook questions and tweets on several of her books including the burden of bad ideas and most recently -- former fbi deputy director andrew mccabe discussing his
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book, the threat. how the fbi protects america in the age of terror and trump. he is interviewed by adam goldman. >> i did spend a lot of time thinking about the decisions and the reasons behind those decisions. how we thought about those issues at the time and with the benefit of hindsight i tried to be honest in our own assessment of did we get it right or not? the big issue there is the announcement, jim comey's announcement in july about the conclusion of the case in a very public way that departed from precedent and of course, jim's decision in october to notify congress about the reopening of the case because of the email on the laptop. i very much agree with the decision to announce the case as we did in july. in retrospect, i think that we probably got that wrong. >> watch book tv this weekend on c-span2. sunday night on c-span's
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q&a. army veteran irene rivers on her book beyond the call about three women who went beyond their regular duties to help women in afghanistan and further the mission. >> one experience she shared with me is there was a time when she felt like there were men who tried to break her and see if she could actually hack it. so they had really heavy gear, weapons, and they were on this road. she pulled her women aside and said no matter what happens, don't you dare start crying and you never give up. she said i had a feeling they're trying to test us. that is exactly what happened. >> irene rivers, sunday night at 8:00 eastern on c-span's q&a. oregon governor kate brown spoke at the center for american progress recently about her state's efforts


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