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Newly-Revamped Child Tax Credit Could Cut Child Poverty By 50%

COVID-19 has stripped Americans of many of the basic items, livelihoods and freedoms we once enjoyed, but it’s been particularly hard for those raising children.

Between schools shifting to remote learning and parents and caregivers either working from home or losing jobs, child poverty and food insecurity have skyrocketed in a very short time.

The Biden Administration has taken aim at this with its landmark $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, the sweeping pandemic relief package signed into law that sent many people $1,400 stimulus checks and extended unemployment benefits.

Yet its most significant inclusion may be the child tax credit provision, which will now transform the way children are provided for in this country. In fact, it could cut child poverty in the U.S. by half.

(via The Guardian): Under the new provision, families will receive $3,600 a year for each child under six, and $3,000 a year for each older child. The money will be paid monthly, rather than the current annual lump sum, easing the burden throughout the year, and it will no longer be tied to any work requirements.

The provision will affect nearly 70 million U.S. children in total and lift 5.5 million of them out of poverty, calculates the Center on Poverty and Social Policy at Columbia University. That amounts to a 55% drop in poverty rates among the 20% of Black children suffering from it, and 53% of Hispanic kids lifted out as well.

The Child Tax Credit addresses the 23 million children whose families are too poor to receive state aid. By removing the work requirements, the provision chips away at the devastating effects of the 1996 welfare reforms that scrapped cash aid for low-income families with children.


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