U.S. Poverty Weekly Update April 10, 2018
U.S. Poverty Campaigns
Weekly Update | April 10, 2018
“Every day in Indiana, parents wake up to the realization that they don't have enough money to buy their children food.”
– RESULTS Indiana volunteer and REAL Change Fellow Sarah Leone in a March 18 letter to the editor in Ft. Wayne Journal Gazette
Got Two Minutes? Call or E-mail Agriculture Aides about Protecting SNAP (April Action)
Congress has returned to Washington. One of the first items on the agenda is a new Farm Bill. House leaders are hoping to unveil their Farm Bill proposal sometime this month, which could include significant changes to SNAP (formerly Food Stamps). Drawing from media reports, the proposed changes would expand work requirements to include older Americans (ages 50-64), make it harder for states to feed people in times of high unemployment, and re-imposing asset limits that create barriers to participation and a disincentive to save. As pointed out in this recent article about Farm Bill negotiations, these proposed changes are aimed at correcting false perceptions about SNAP rather than real problems. Note that with China’s new tariffs on U.S. agricultural goods, pressure will mount for Congress to get a Farm Bill done quickly. It’s vital that you let your members of Congress know that protecting SNAP must be the top priority for any new Farm Bill.
TAKE ACTION: Take two minutes to call or e-mail your House and Senate Agriculture aides about protecting SNAP. Remind that SNAP is vital to communities around the country. Congress should not be punishing families for using SNAP exactly as it was intended – a temporary support when times get tough. Use the April Action and our updated SNAP Lobby Request as a guide for your conversations. You can find aide names and contact information here. If you have questions or need coaching, please contact Jos Linn.
Got Ten Minutes? Amplify Your SNAP Message with a Letter to the Editor
One of the most effective means to influence lawmakers is through the media. Members of Congress pay attention to media in their home states and districts to get an idea of what their constituents want. With SNAP once again facing harmful cuts and changes, getting media urging your members of Congress to reject these proposals could go a long way in preventing them from becoming law. We must ensure that lawmakers put reducing hunger and protecting SNAP above all else in the new Farm Bill.
TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to send a letter to the editor urging your members of Congress to oppose any Farm Bill that cuts, restructures, or restricts access to SNAP. Use our online letter to the editor action (updated today) to send a letter to your local paper. Be sure to personalize your letter by mentioning your members of Congress by name. HINT: Copy and paste the final version into your own e-mail or your newspapers online form and send it – this will increase the chance it will get printed.
Got Twenty Minutes? Come See Heather Booth – the Most Influential Person You’ve Never Heard Of
RESULTS is actively working to make this year’s RESULTS International Conference one of the best ever. One reason you should be there is to see one of the most influential advocates that you’ve likely never heard of – Heather Booth. Heather was an organizer in the civil rights, anti-Vietnam War, and women's movements of the 1960s and has never stopped. She is the founding Director and is now President of the Midwest Academy, training social change leaders and organizers. She has been involved in and managed political campaigns focusing on voter turnout, immigration, health care, financial reform, and most recently tax policy (she worked with RESULTS and other organizations as part of Americans for Tax Fairness). As Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has said, “When I asked how to get organized, I was told two words. Heather Booth.”
We are thrilled to have Heather speak at our Conference this year and share her experience, advice, and hope about citizen advocacy in the fight to end poverty. In addition to having her speak, we will also be screening the new documentary film “Heather Booth: Changing the World” at the Conference. This will be a unique chance to converse with a pioneer in the world of grassroots organizing – don’t miss it!
TAKE ACTION: Take twenty minutes to plan who from your group will attend the 2018 RESULTS International Conference, July 14-17 in Washington, DC. Our goal is to have every local RESULTS group represented at the Conference, ideally with two people including one person who has never been before. And if you already know you are planning to attend, go ahead and register now. You can still get the Early Bird discounted rate. You don’t want to miss this experience. If you need help covering your travel or hotel expenses, apply for scholarship assistance.
Nominate a Journalist for the Cameron Duncan Media Award. Do you know a journalist who has been an exceptional voice on issues of poverty? Would you like to show your appreciation for that person? Then nominate him/her for the Cameron Duncan Media Award. This award is given to a journalist who demonstrates a commitment to fairly and accurately covering issues of U.S. and/or global poverty in the news. The award is announced and presented at the RESULTS International Conference each year. Read more in the RESULTS Newsroom about the award and how to nominate someone. Nominations are due by April 23.
Poor People’s Campaign Announces New Report Over the past two years, the Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival has reached out to communities in more than 30 states across this nation. They’ve met with tens of thousands of people, gathered testimonies from persons experiencing poverty, and chronicled their demands for a better society. In partnership with the Institute for Policy Studies, the PPC has announced the release of the new report, The Souls of Poor Folk: Auditing America. The report reveals how the evils of systemic racism, poverty, ecological devastation, and the war economy, and militarism are perpetuated by a distorted moral narrative that must change. Learn more by reading the report today.
New Report Calls for CTC Expansion. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) has a new paper out highlighting what an expansion of the Child Tax Credit (CTC) could do for low-income families. The CTC is already a powerful tool to reduce poverty; the CTC and the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) combined lifted over 8 million people out of poverty in 2016. However, the recent tax bill did little to expand the CTC for low-income parents, while providing wealthy families are large CTC increase. The paper proposes changes that if implemented would lift an additional 1.2 million people out of poverty each year.
Proposed Ruled Would Punish Immigrant Families. An imminent proposal to change the “public charge” rule by the Trump Administration would put low-income immigrant families at greater risk. The change would allow immigration officials to deny visas and green cards to anyone whose family receives public benefits such as SNAP or Medicaid. As noted by the Coalition on Human Needs, “parents would be forced to make impossible choices between putting food on the table for their children or obtaining secure immigration status.” Stay tuned for how you can weigh in during the public comment period to protect access to key anti-poverty programs.
Consider the REAL Change Fellowship. The REAL Change Organizing and Advocacy Fellowship to Fight Poverty is still taking applications. If you know an emerging leader aged 18-30 who would make a welcomed addition to RESULTS’ anti-poverty work, urge them to apply today.
Upcoming U.S. Poverty staff time out of the office: Meredith Dodson, April 20.
RESULTS Introductory Call, Wednesday, April 4 at 8:30 pm ET. To participate, call (712) 775-8972, passcode: 761262. Register here.
U.S. Poverty Free Agents Calls, Tuesday, April 17 at 1:00pm and 8:00 pm ET. Login at http://fuze.me/32256018 or dial in by phone at (201) 479-4595, Meeting ID: 32256018#.
RESULTS Anti-Oppression Training Webinar, Tuesday, April 17 at 9:00p m ET. We will discuss the Invisible Knapsack by Peggy McIntosh (please read beforehand). Login at http://fuze.me/33986526 or dial (201) 479-4595 Meeting ID: 33986526#.
RESULTS Introductory Call, Friday, April 20 at 1:00 pm ET. To participate, call (712) 775-8972, passcode: 761262. Register here.
House and Senate Recess, April 30 – May 4. After any lobby meeting, please complete the RESULTS Lobby Report Form to let us know how it went.
RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Webinar, Tuesday, May 1 at 8:00 pm ET. Participate at http://fuze.me/32255914 or (201) 479-4595, Meeting ID: 32255914#.
RESULTS Anti-Oppression Training Webinar, Tuesday, May 15 at 9:00p m ET. We will do "cultural sketches" understand how our identities influence our values, decisions, behaviors, and opportunities. Login at http://fuze.me/33986526 or dial (201) 479-4595 Meeting ID: 33986526#.
2018 RESULTS International Conference, July 14-17, 2018, Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, D.C. Registration is now open – register today. Watch our new 2018 Conference video and share it (along with our flyer) with others you know!
Get Your RESULTS Promo Materials. If you need banners, pens, stickers, or business cards for your local RESULTS work, fill out our Materials Order Form and we’ll send them to you.
Got a Question for the RESULTS Board? If you have a question, comment, or suggestion for the RESULTS/RESULTS Educational Fund Board, please e-mail them to RESULTS Grassroots Board Member Steven McGee at [email protected]. View the most recently published Board minutes on the RESULTS website, as well as RESULTS’ most recent Annual Report.
Please Fill Out the Lobby Report Form. After any lobby meeting, please fill out the RESULTS Lobby Report Form to let us know how it went. When you have a meeting where both U.S. and global poverty issues are discussed, please fill it out twice.
|2018 U.S. Poverty Campaigns Success Grid|
|Total to Date||2018 Goal||Details|
|Face-to-Face Mtgs||21||200||8 Senators, 13 Representatives|
|Media||47||500||43 LTEs and 4 Op-Eds in 20 states|
|# of people reached through outreach||259||500||Monthly #LettersGetLOUD meetings and 8 other outreach events|
|# of new U.S. Poverty volunteers from existing groups||8||100|