353 Groups tell Congress: Expand the Child Tax Credit to lift children out of poverty
Editor’s note: This week, 353 groups, including the Coalition on Human Needs, signed a letter, delivered to every member of Congress, urging members to expand the Child Tax Credit and to do so in a way that particularly helps children in families with the lowest incomes. You can view the letter in its entirety and see who signed here.
The letter urges Congress “to prioritize expanding the Child Tax Credit (CTC), focusing on low-income children. This is particularly important to address increases in child poverty rates, and timely given efforts to pass a bipartisan tax agreement before the end of the year.
“There are currently 19 million children excluded from the full credit because of the structure of the CTC,” the letter states. “In deliberating a potential year-end or early 2024 tax package, Congress has an opportunity to improve the CTC for the lowest income families currently left out of the full benefit. When Congress expanded the Child Tax Credit in 2021, child poverty fell by 46%, lifting 716,000 Black, 820,000 White, and 1.2 million Hispanic children out of poverty in just one year— a stunning achievement. Research shows that most low-income families spent the expanded CTC on basic necessities like food, utilities, and rent or mortgage payments, as well as education. But when the CTC expansion was allowed to expire, the proportion of children in poverty more than doubled, from 5.2 percent to 12.4 percent – much of this because of the expanded CTC.”
View the entire letter and the 353 groups that signed here.