RESULTS Weekly Update October 12, 2021
Quote of the Week
“The pandemic isn’t over anywhere until it is over everywhere.”
– RESULTS Indianapolis volunteer Brendan Bow in a October 6 op-ed in the Indianapolis Star
Table of Contents
- Keep pushing Congress to pass investments in housing and reducing child poverty
- Reach out to the Senate on global vaccine manufacturing
- Quick News on U.S. and Global Poverty
- Upcoming Events
- Grassroots Resources
Keep pushing Congress to pass investments in housing and reducing child poverty
Another week has passed without an agreement on a new economic recovery package. While temporary progress has been made to avoid a government shutdown and default on our debts (Congress passed temporary measures to address these issues in early December), progress on the recovery package is moving slow. The main issue seems still to be resolving how big the package will be (as a reminder, the package will be offset by increased taxes on the wealthy and corporations). While House leaders have been pushing for a package that uses the full $3.5 trillion authorized in the budget resolution (passed over the summer), Sens. Manchin (D-WV) and Sinema (D-AZ) are pushing for something much smaller. Recognizing that the final bill (also known as Build Back Better) will be smaller, leaders are deciding now which items to cut.
This means that our priorities – $90 billion for rental assistance with most going to Housing Choice Vouchers, and making the new CTC and EITC changes permanent – are on the chopping block. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has set a deadline of October 31 to pass a recovery package along with infrastructure legislation, which means we could see an agreement at any time. That’s why your advocacy right now is so important. If lawmakers do not hear from you now, they will not make your concerns their priority.
TAKE ACTION: Congress is on recess this week (although House committees are meeting) but negotiations will continue. Here are the top things you can do to ensure that a final recovery package includes provisions for housing and the EITC/CTC:
- Get House members to sign “Dear Colleague” letter on housing by tomorrow. Ritchie Torres (D-NY-15) is circulating Dear Colleague letter that calls for preserving the current funding levels for the housing investments in the House recovery package. We have 72 signers so far. If your representative is not yet signed on, please contact their housing aide today. The deadline to sign on is tomorrow, October 13.
- Continue to follow up with housing and tax aides. In addition to #1, if you have not recently heard back from housing and tax aides for your senators and representatives, please contact them this week urging them to contact Senate and House leaders about our priorities for the recovery bill.
- Generate media during this week’s recess. Most members will be in their home states this week, which makes it an ideal time to get local media pushing Congress to reduce housing insecurity and poverty in the recovery bill. Use our online letter to the editor action to submit your letter today.
If you need help, please contact Jos Linn.
Reach out to the Senate on global vaccine manufacturing
Much is at stake with the economic recovery/reconciliation package currently being debated in Congress (read about the latest developments in our blog). With Democrats trying to figure out how to shrink the bill, priorities like increasing global vaccine manufacturing are at risk. Without increased resources for manufacturing and distributing of the COVID-19 vaccines, COVID will continue devastating lives and crippling healthcare, education, and economic systems, particularly in low-income settings. For example, countries in Africa have, on average, a vaccination rate of 3-4% because vaccines are not available to them. To ensure we find our way out of the pandemic and provide equitable access to the vaccines, Congress needs to hear from you.
In the package currently being debated, the House has included $2 billion to expand manufacturing capacity of COVID-19 vaccines. When combined with funding previously provided by Congress, the Biden Administration has significant resources to expand access to vaccines in low-income countries. We are calling on the Senate to at least match the House proposal and ensure these funds are directed toward expanding manufacturing capacity.
Many low-income countries hoped to receive COVID-19 vaccine doses through COVAX, a global collaboration to accelerate the development, production, and equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines. However, many rich countries jumped the queue by creating separate deals with vaccine manufacturers and paying a higher price per immunization dose than COVAX. Rich countries have essentially bought all of the available doses. Meanwhile, COVAX had to slash its already moderate goals, reducing its 2021 vaccine supply forecast by 25 percent, not because they don’t have money, but because there are no vaccines to buy. Read more in our new backgrounder.
TAKE ACTION: We must speak up now on prioritizing global vaccine manufacturing as the recovery/reconciliation package is taking shape by reaching out to our senators and getting media published, calling attention the need for leadership and action.
- If you are a Senate point person, call and email the aide responsible for health and the Legislative Director and ask the senator to speak and/or write to Senate leadership (Schumer) and Senate HELP Committee leadership (Murray, Burr), calling on them to include $2 billion to increase vaccine manufacturing in the reconciliation bill.
- If you are not a Senate point person, use this online action alert with the same request and share this action with others so your senators hear from lots of constituents.
- Inform the public via the media. Submit a letter to the editor on vaccine access using our online media action. Personalize the text we provide with your own personal reason for caring about vaccine access.
- Engage others. Use our current Global Poverty Action Sheet to encourage and enroll others in submitting letters to the editor. Be sure to send your published media to your members of Congress. If you have questions or need support in taking these critical actions, please contact RESULTS staff for assistance.
Quick News on U.S. and Global Poverty
Global nutrition legislation. Last week the bipartisan Global Malnutrition Prevention and Treatment Act was introduced in the Senate (S2956). The legislation, which has a bipartisan companion bill in the House of Representatives (HR4693), is a positive sign of continued U.S. leadership in global food security and nutrition. Read more on our blog.
Four quick takeaways from the White House COVID-19 Summit. Perhaps the most important outcome of the Summit is the United States embracing the WHO target of vaccinating at least 70 percent of the population in every country in every income category by this time next year. With only 1 percent of people in the lowest-income countries fully vaccinated today, this is an ambitious goal. Read more on our blog.
Read new RESULTS Blog post on housing. In a new RESULTS Blog post, U.S. Poverty Senior Policy Associate Michael Santos says “Congress is on the brink of passing a historic recovery package… but it may not include expansion in rental assistance,“ which would be devastating for many struggling households who have been impacted by the growing housing affordability, eviction, and homelessness crises. Now is the time to take action, while there is a brief window of opportunity to tell Congress why including housing investments in the recovery package is critical.
New data debunks CTC work requirement myths. As some members of Congress push to exclude families with little or no income from the Child Tax Credit (i.e. taking away “full refundability” of the credit) by imposing a work requirement, a new paper from Columbia University shows that “real world data does not support claims that Child Tax Credit has negative employment impacts that offset it’s documented reductions in poverty & hardship.” In addition, Sam Hammond of the Niskanen Center outlines the reasons why the CTC should not have a work requirement, noting that research shows that adding a work requirement may not only be unnecessary but may also undermine the goals of its proponents.
Survey highlights how families are spending their CTC. A new survey from Washington University in St. Louis’s Social Policy Institute (SPI) found that lower-income American households are more likely than higher-income families to spend the expanded Child Tax Credit (CTC) on essential expenses and tutors for their children. All respondents (regardless of income) ranked saving for emergencies and paying for rent, food, utilities, etc. as the most common uses for their CTC.
Join GAP call for Returned Peace Corps Volunteers on Thursday. The Global Allies Program: Partners Ending Poverty with RESULTS (or GAP for short) aims to train and engage Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) in advocacy that will have impact, and to connect RPCVs to like-minded and experienced advocates in the RESULTS grassroots network. Join us this Thursday, October 14 at 8:30 pm ET and learn how you can take action on improving global health, education and economic development. Register today. (Registration ends an hour prior to the webinar.)
Register for RESULTS Wisconsin housing forum next week. On October 19, RESULTS Wisconsin is hosting a virtual Housing Insecurity Forum as part of the local United Way’s Homelessness Awareness Week. The panel discussion will discuss the importance of housing vouchers, how housing affects health, and United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County’s work to end family homelessness by 2023. Speakers include Kali Daugherty, Lead Community Intervention Specialist at the Milwaukee County Housing Division and RESULTS Expert on Poverty; R.N. Fox, RESULTS Expert on Poverty; Krystina Kohler, Financial Stability Portfolio Manager at United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County; and Kathryn Leifheit, Ph.D., MSPH: Postdoctoral Researcher at UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. The event is next Tuesday, October 19, 12:00-1:00 pm CT. Please plan to join this exciting event by registering for it today.
Only a few more weeks to apply for the RESULTS Fellowship. The RESULTS Fellowship is an 11-month program designed for activists ages 20-35 to harness the power of their voices, sharpen their advocacy and organizing skills, and be in action with dozens of other dynamic young leaders. If you are interested in applying, go to www.results.org/fellowship. The application process closes November 1.
Submit your nomination for the Bob Dickerson Leadership Award. In memory of long-time RESULTS advocate Bob Dickerson, each year we recognize an advocate’s extraordinary leadership and commitment to the mission of RESULTS with the Bob Dickerson Leadership Award. Submit your nomination for the award no later than November 1. Use our online form to submit a nomination.
Become a RESULTS Regional Coordinator. Regional Coordinators (RCs) are vital volunteer leaders in our network, helping to coach and support RESULTS groups around the country to be the best they can be. If you (or others) are interested in becoming a Regional Coordinator with RESULTS, or are simply interested in learning more about the role, please contact Lisa Marchal.
Congressional schedule. The House and Senate are in session this week. Submit your remote meeting requests today.
Tuesday, October 12: Encore Presentation: Discovering Yourself as a Leader workshop, 8:30 pm ET. Registration has closed for this webinar.
Thursday, October 14: Global Allies Program: Partners Ending Poverty with RESULTS, 8:30 pm ET. Register today. Registration ends one hour prior to the webinar.
Tuesday, October 19: U.S. Poverty Free Agents, 1:00 pm and 8:00 pm ET. If you are interested in joining, Jos Linn for more information.
Wednesday, October 20: Action Network Webinars, 12:30 pm ET and 8:00 pm ET. Register for the afternoon session or evening session. Registration ends one hour prior to each webinar.
Thursday, October 21: U.S. Poverty Monthly Policy Forum, 8:00 pm ET. Register here. Registration ends one hour prior to the webinar.
Thursday, October 21: Global Poverty Monthly Policy Forum, 9:00 pm ET. Register here. Registration ends one hour prior to the webinar.
Monday, October 25: Global Poverty Free Agents, 7:00 pm ET. If you are interested in joining, contact Lisa Marchal for more information.
Wednesday, October 27: Motivational Interviewing training (session 2), 9:00 pm ET. Register here. Registration ends one hour prior to the webinar.
Wednesday, November 3: Cultivating New Relationships Through Action, 8:00 pm ET. Register here. Registration ends one hour prior to the webinar.
Saturday, November 6: RESULTS National Webinar, 1:00 pm ET. Register today. Registration ends one hour prior to the webinar.
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