The Online Resource for Massachusetts Poverty Law Advocates


Children Facing Very High Hardship Rates

Some 19 million children (more than 1 in 4) live in a household that is behind on rent or mortgage payments, isn’t getting enough to eat, or both, we estimate based on Census Bureau Household Pulse Survey data from late June and July. Coming on top of extensive data showing severe, widespread hardship due to COVID-19 and the deep recession, these estimates provide further evidence that policymakers must act now on a new economic relief package.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Expanding Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit Would Benefit More Than 10 Million Rural Residents, Strongly Help Rural Areas

Like the low-income portion of the Child Tax Credit, the Earned Income Tax Credit is disproportionately important to people in rural areas.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Boost Homelessness Funding in Next Economic Relief Package

As policymakers negotiate the next economic relief package, they must provide more funding for homelessness service and prevention programs. An additional $11.5 billion would help to ensure that people experiencing homelessness can access shelters that can keep them safe from the pandemic and to reduce the number of people losing their homes in the first place.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Many Unemployed Workers Will Exhaust Jobless Benefits This Year If More Weeks of Benefits Aren’t in Relief Package

Policymakers should include an increase in the weeks of benefits available in this legislation.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Tribal Nations More Vulnerable to COVID-19 Impacts, Need Additional Fiscal Aid

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Wed, 08/05/2020 - 10:13am

As the President and Congress negotiate a new economic relief package, tribal governments need more federal aid to continue offering vital services and support the economic activities that generate their revenues and employ hundreds of thousands of Americans. Any such package needs to include robust aid for tribal governments and to supplement federal agency budgets that fund Native American programs.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Robust Unemployment Insurance, Other Relief Needed to Mitigate Racial and Ethnic Unemployment Disparities

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Tue, 08/04/2020 - 5:15pm

Maintaining robust, expanded unemployment insurance would relieve hardship that falls disproportionately on workers of color.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

States Should Follow California and Colorado, Extend EITC to More Immigrants

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Tue, 08/04/2020 - 10:10am

States should follow the recent lead of California and Colorado and make their state Earned Income Tax Credits (EITCs) more inclusive for people regardless of their immigration status. That would help expand economic opportunity for all their residents and support essential workers — disproportionately immigrants — who are earning low pay during the pandemic.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

States Are Using Federal Fiscal Aid But Need Substantially More

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Mon, 08/03/2020 - 2:00pm

The Trump Administration and some news outlets are citing Treasury Department data showing that states had spent 25 percent of the CARES Act’s Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) as of June 30 to argue that states don’t need more fiscal aid to address th

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

5 Million Essential and Front-line Workers Get Health Coverage Through Medicaid

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Mon, 08/03/2020 - 9:58am

With millions more Americans now jobless or experiencing sharp income losses due to the COVID-19 economic crisis, the need for Medicaid coverage is growing. Meanwhile, a major state budget crisis has already driven some states to cut Medicaid and other health programs.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

In Case You Missed It...

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Fri, 07/31/2020 - 3:10pm

This week at CBPP, we focused on the federal budget and taxes, housing, state budgets and taxes, health, food assistance, family income support, Social Security, and the economy.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Rising Hardship Reveals Need for Relief Now

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Fri, 07/31/2020 - 1:50pm

With new weekly data revealing several troubling trends, including increases in the already significant number of people struggling to buy food and pay rent, policymakers must act now to prevent further hardship.

Over the last four weeks:

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

New Videos: Amid Economic Crisis, Boosting SNAP Will Make Big Difference

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Fri, 07/31/2020 - 1:45pm

As policymakers negotiate a new economic relief package, boosting SNAP (food stamps) should be at the top of their list, new videos in our “SNAP Matters” series show.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Next Relief Package Should Include Funds for Subsidized Jobs

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Thu, 07/30/2020 - 2:59pm

The economic relief package that policymakers are now negotiating must both reduce extreme hardship and lay the groundwork for a strong recovery. Funding for subsidized jobs — an effective approach during the Great Recession of a decade ago — could help address both goals. The Senate Republican plan doesn’t include enough funding to address hardship and doesn’t let the funds go to subsidized employment.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Senate Republican Plan’s Emergency Fund a Good Step, But Inadequate

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Thu, 07/30/2020 - 11:36am

The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Coronavirus Emergency Fund in the Senate Republican relief plan is a step in the right direction, but it won’t nearly meet the sharply rising need due to COVID-19 and the resulting recession.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Federal Aid Delay Will Mean Damaging State Cuts With Long-Term Impacts

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Thu, 07/30/2020 - 9:35am

States need substantial federal aid — now — to stem the fiscal crisis caused by COVID-19 and the resulting recession. States’ revenues are plummeting and their costs are rising and, as a result, they face budget shortfalls that could total more than $550 billion through fiscal year 2022.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Boosting SNAP: Benefit Increase Would Help Children in Short and Long Term

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Thu, 07/30/2020 - 9:31am

Despite the alarming rise in the number of people, including children, who are struggling to get enough to eat, the Senate Republican proposal for the next economic relief package doesn’t include a key measure to address this hardship: raising SNAP (food stamp) benefits.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Emergency Special Enrollment Period Would Boost Health Coverage Access at a Critical Time

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Wed, 07/29/2020 - 4:49pm

Twenty-seven percent more people used special enrollment periods (SEPs) to sign up for plans in the federal marketplace in early 2020 compared to the same period in 2019.[1] While this is significant, far more people with health and financial worries during the COVID-19 pandemic likely would enroll in federal marketplace plans if given the chance.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Trump Administration Should Withdraw Rule That Would Deepen State Budget Crisis, Make Medicaid Cuts Likelier

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Tue, 07/28/2020 - 3:26pm

Medicaid is playing an increasingly significant role in addressing the health and economic impacts of COVID-19.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Senate Republican Relief Plan Ignores Needs of States, Schools

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Tue, 07/28/2020 - 2:43pm

The Senate Republicans’ new economic relief plan contains no new fiscal aid for states and localities, whose revenues have collapsed due to COVID-19 and the resulting recession. Without that aid, they will continue laying off teachers and other workers and cutting services, which will hurt struggling families, worsen racial and income inequities, and make the recession deeper and longer lasting.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty

Without Boost in Next COVID-19 Relief Bill, Puerto Rico Faces Deep Food Aid Cuts

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - Tue, 07/28/2020 - 9:31am

Nearly 1.5 million Puerto Rico residents, including more than 300,000 children, are facing deep cuts in food assistance in August, but the new Senate Republican economic relief plan doesn’t include more food aid for Puerto Rico. While the House-passed Heroes Act includes a modest increase in nutrition funding for Puerto Rico, it falls short of Governor Wanda Vázquez Garced’s request. Without sufficient additional food aid, more than a million U.S. citizens in Puerto Rico will face these food assistance losses while also grappling with COVID-19 and its severe economic impact.

Categories: Benefits, Poverty


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