Washington, DC - The United States is profoundly alarmed by the recent United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) report that implicates South Sudanese government forces in the recruitment of child soldiers since the July 7th return to hostilities. Above and beyond our calls for an end to ongoing violence in South Sudan, we insist on an immediate halt to the unlawful recruitment and use of child soldiers by government and opposition forces. Individuals responsible for the unlawful recruitment or use of child soldiers for armed groups or forces may be subject to sanction under U.S. law and may be targeted for UN sanctions.

Sacramento, California - The USDA’s Economic Research Service  (ERS) has compiled and released preliminary agricultural production statistics for 2015 in California.  This first set of data indicates that production value fell by $9.5 billion, or more than eight percent compared to 2014, to a total of $47,071,513,000. California remains the leading agricultural state in the nation.

Washington, DC - Secretary of State John Kerry: "A year ago, President Obama set the goal of welcoming at least 10,000 of the most vulnerable refugees fleeing the conflict in Syria to the United States. Today, by committing additional resources to our refugee admissions process and maintaining our rigorous screening process and commitment to the security of the American people, we have reached that goal. Since 1975, over 3.2 million refugees have joined the fabric of American society, each one making us a stronger, more pluralistic society.

Sacramento, California - The California Department of Food & Agriculture (CDFA) is developing regulations to establish cannabis cultivation licensing and a track and trace system, collectively referred to as the Medical Cannabis Cultivation Program (MCCP). The Department has scheduled eight public scoping workshops next month to assist with the development of a Programmatic Environmental Impact Report (PEIR).

Washington, DC - Researchers at the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) recently identified compounds that potentially can be used to inhibit Zika virus replication and reduce its ability to kill brain cells. These compounds now can be studied by the broader research community to help combat the Zika public health crisis. NCATS is part of the National Institutes of Health.

Rochester, Minnesota - For many children, the start of a new school year can be stressful, especially if they've been victims of bullying in the past. Mayo Clinic Children's Center psychologist Dr. Bridget Biggs says parents and caregivers should know the warning signs. "If your child is reluctant to go to school, stressed after spending time online or avoids social situations, he or she may be being bullied." Dr. Biggs points out that consequences of bullying can be serious. She says victims are at increased risk of depression, anxiety, sleep problems, self-harm, poor grades and in rare cases, suicide.