2022 U.S. Poverty Laser Talks


January 7, 2022

Printable versions: Word/PDF

Prioritize Rental Assistance in Recovery Package

Engage: Because of rising rents, stagnant wages, and shortage in supply of affordable housing, even before the pandemic millions of families were paying more than half their earnings toward rent.

Problem:  Only 1 in 4 eligible renters is able to access federal housing assistance, and people of color are more likely to be cost-burdened renters.

Inform:  Access to housing is critical for the well-being of families, yet millions struggle to keep a roof over their heads and meet basic needs [share your story about the high cost of rent/housing and/or homelessness in your area].

Furthermore, due to historically racist policies, Black Americans experience higher rates of extremely low-income renters and people experiencing homelessness than white households. In the past, Congress has underfunded and underinvested in long-term housing assistance. Passing the Build Back Better Act with key housing investments will lift children out of poverty, stably house millions of families, and start to correct the legacy of racism in housing.

Call to Action: Will you commit to passing a strong recovery bill, including at least $24 billion in funding for Housing Choice Vouchers?

What are your priorities when it comes addressing the affordable housing crisis?

Reduce Poverty for Children and Families

Engage: In 2021, Congress passed a major expansion of the Child Tax Credit (or “CTC”), which helped cut child poverty nearly in half last year.

Problem: Just as families are facing higher costs and struggling to make ends meet, monthly payments have ended — and 27 million children in the lowest-income families are now losing all or part of their CTC.

Inform: The 2021 CTC expansion is the most significant investment in reducing child poverty in a generation. And the impact has been immediate. Since the monthly payments started in July 2021, nearly 4 million children were lifted out of poverty. Researchers at Columbia University estimate that the expanded CTC could reduce child poverty by a stunning 45 percent. [share your own experience and/or state data on the impact of expanding the CTC]. Unfortunately, the Build Back Better Act, which continues the expanded CTC, has stalled in the Senate, putting this critical anti-poverty policy at risk.

Call to Action: Congress must extend the expanded CTC, especially permanent full refundability for all low-income families and the monthly payment option. Will you urge your Senate colleagues and leadership to make passing a CTC extension the top priority in early 2022? How may I follow up with you on this?

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