CHN’s Human Needs Watch: Tracking Hardship, March 22, 2024


March 22, 2024

March 22, 2024 

The FY 2025 budget needs edition. As we write this, Congress is limping along toward what we hope will be final passage of the FY 2024 appropriations bills. Because Congress is almost six months late in completing this process (the FY 2024 year began on October 1, 2023), human needs advocates are preparing to pivot quickly to 2025 spending. 

Already, President Biden has released his proposed FY 2025 budget. House Republicans unveiled their own budget resolution. In an upcoming webinar, scheduled for Thursday, April 4, the Coalition on Human Needs and experts from other groups will delve into these competing visions.  

As we look back on FY 2024 and prepare for FY 2025, we know there is much unfinished business. One can barely list out all of the important human needs programs that cry out for additional investment. They include addressing our child care crisis, additional funding for home- and community-based services, paid family and medical leave, energy assistance, access for affordable broadband, more help for nutrition assistance, expanding health care coverage, and addressing the nation’s chronic shortage of affordable housing – just to name a few. 

We also know that we must continue the push for an expanded Child Tax Credit, the single most effective means we have to sharply reduce child poverty. A bipartisan expansion bill has passed the House – talks are ongoing in the Senate and a Day of Action to push Senators is planned for Tuesday, April 2. 

16 million/
5.8 million

The bipartisan Child Tax Credit expansion, which overwhelmingly passed the House earlier this year but is stuck in the Senate, would expand the CTC for 16 million children in families with low incomes – including 5.8 million children under the age of 6 in its first year. The measure would bring these families up to or closer to the full $2,000-per-child credit that families with higher incomes receive. Tweet this.



The expanded CTC would overwhelmingly help families of color whose parents disproportionately find themselves in low-paid work due to ongoing discrimination and other structural barriers. Among children under the age of 6, 39% of Black children would benefit, along with 37% of Latino children and 34% of American Indian or Alaska Native children. This compares with 16% of White children and 15% of Asian children. Tweet this.

$21.5 billion

The amount of wages workers and families lose every year due to a lack of paid family and medical leave. Tweet this.


Just over 25% of the private sector workforce in the U.S. has access to paid family leave. The rest have unpaid family leave or no leave at all. Tweet this.


This week more than 70 businesses and nonprofits shut their doors for one day to protest the failure of Congress to pass paid family and medical leave for working people. During this day of protest, employers provided paid leave for their workers. Tweet this.


The estimated number of aging and adults with disabilities on Medicaid waiting lists for home- and community-based services.


President Biden’s proposed FY 2025 budget calls for $150 billion over 10 years to expand access to aging and disability care and increase pay for care workers; $400 billion to address the child care crisis; $200 billion for a universal pre-K program for all 3- and 4-year-olds; and $325 billion for paid family and medical leave.

42 million/
12.1 million 

The number of households in 2022 paying more than a third of their income on housing had grown to 42 million, a spike from previous years. Of these households, 22.4 million were renters. And just over half of these renters, 12.1 million, paid more than 50% of their income on rent, the highest level ever.


On a single night in 2023, 653,000 people were experiencing homelessness in the U.S., a 125 increase from the previous year and the highest number ever recorded.

$258 billion 

President Biden’s proposed FY 2025 budget calls for more than $258 billion that would “build or preserve over 2 million housing units, support millions of first-time homebuyers, guarantee affordable housing for hundreds of thousands of extremely low-income veterans and youth aging out of foster care, and advance efforts to end homelessness.”