Tell Congress - Protect the Child Tax Credit
Extending the payroll tax cut and unemployment insurance are essential measures to protect American families and to prevent the recovery from stalling out. However, not on the backs of poor children! Proposals to restrict eligibility would deny the credit to nearly 5 million children in low-income, tax-paying immigrant families.
The Child Tax Credit’s purpose is to reduce child poverty – in 2010 alone, the CTC kept 1.3 million children out of poverty. Making eligibility changes to this valuable program would take money away from many poor families – thus undermining the CTC’s central purpose of poverty reduction.
Promise the Children joins other national advocacy groups to urge members of Congress to Protect the Child Tax Credit by signing on to a letter.
The letter ….
As organizations that come together to advocate for the needs of low-income and vulnerable populations, we strongly urge you to oppose any restrictions to eligibility for the Child Tax Credit. We believe that extending the payroll tax cut and unemployment insurance is essential to protecting families and our fragile economic recovery. However, asking children in low-income families to bear the burden of paying for this tax package—while refusing to ask millionaires to pay their share—is immoral, unfair, and outrageous.Proposals to restrict access to the Child Tax Credit would affect nearly five million children in low-income, tax-paying families, counteracting the boost to consumers and the economy that the payroll tax cut is meant to produce.
The purpose of the Child Tax Credit, and in particular the refundable portion (called the Additional Child Tax Credit), is to reduce child poverty. The Child Tax Credit kept 1.3 million children out of poverty in 2010. The typical taxpayer harmed by proposals to restrict eligibility for the Child Tax Credit earns $21,240 per year and would experience an 8% increase in their taxes owed, amounting to a loss of $1,800 in the typical family’s income per year. Losing this income will compromise the ability of families to put food on the table or pay for rent or heat. Research has consistently shown that children in food-insecure families are more likely to have health and developmental problems.
It is particularly cruel to target the children of immigrants in these negotiations. Children of immigrants now make up nearly one-quarter of the nation’s child population. In 2010, nearly 30 percent of children with foreign-born parents were poor.Children of immigrants are far more likely to live in food-insecure households and are more likely to suffer from fair or poor health. These children, so many of whom are citizens, are an important part of America’s future. It is profoundly unwise to place so many at risk by denying them the credit designed to prevent or reduce poverty among working families.
In short, our poorest and most vulnerable children should not be a revenue source. Most of the deficit reduction plans put forward over the last two years have explicitly sought to protect the poor.
We urge you to pass a fair tax package and oppose any changes in eligibility for the Child Tax Credit.