As we build this movement, there are specific changes that we can make today to reach our goal of reducing poverty by half in ten years. Yesterday, Senator Edwards discussed one of these: the need to expand the Child Tax Credit. Current law denies the CTC to millions of poor children and their families because they earn too little to owe federal income tax. By lowering the minimum earnings from the current $12,050 to $8,500 for 2008, families of more than 13 million children will become newly eligible to receive the credit or receive an increased amount.
During these tough economic times, helping our lowest-income families should be a top priority. The House of Representatives has begun to address this need by approving H.R. 6049, which expands the CTC to all families who make at least $8,500 a year. But it’s looking like the Senate might not go as far as the House and would leave over 1.5 million low-income children out entirely or give their families a smaller refund.
We must all voice our support for real change to the CTC. Add your name to this petition urging Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) to:
- Expand the CTC to the children who need it most, allowing those families making $8,500 a year to access the credit, and
- End the annual increases in required earnings that deprive low-income families and children from this needed help.
Starting today at East Harlem’s Yorkville Common Pantry, Senator Edwards is heading out on the road, learning from citizens affected by poverty, rallying with community activists, and putting pressure on elected officials. Together, we can build a movement to cut poverty in half, but we need you—educating yourself on the issues, bringing your friends and family into Half In Ten, and urging elected officials to take action—to make the concrete changes that can pull families out of poverty.
Thanks again for your support!
The Half In Ten Team
Half in Ten plans to reduce poverty in the United States by 50 percent within 10 years. Under the leadership of Senator John Edwards, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN), the Center for American Progress Action Fund (CAPAF), the Coalition on Human Needs (CHN), and the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR), have joined forces on the campaign to elevate and sustain a focus on the situations facing the poor and middle class today,build and strengthen an effective constituency to demand legislative action on poverty and economic mobility, advance specific legislative and policy proposals that will deliver real benefits to struggling American families. For more information on how to reduce poverty in America, see From Poverty to Prosperity: A National Strategy to Cut Poverty in Half by the Center for American Progress Task Force on Poverty.