REACH FOR THE STARS
While working families are struggling to provide for their children, the super-rich are lining up to pay $25 million for a space jaunt with Jeff Bezos.
Here on Earth, American children are getting some help thanks to the American Rescue Plan’s expanded Child Tax Credit (CTC). In Pennsylvania, 2.4 million children will benefit from the expanded CTC, a third of whom were not fully eligible before.
This expansion of the CTC isn’t just a response to the economic chaos many families endured because of COVID job loss; it’s a powerful initiative to cut child poverty by almost half. Of course workers in hourly-wage and service jobs were the hardest hit by the shutdowns so this change is definitely timely, but it’s much-needed even without the pandemic backdrop.
The really good thing about this reform is that more families will qualify for the tax credit. Lower earners can get the full tax credit, benefitting 892,000 more PA children. Families also don’t have to wait until tax time to get a refund – an automatic monthly deposit started yesterday.
The bad thing about this reform is that it’s only temporary, risking families slipping back into poverty.
Poverty is bad for kids in so many ways, especially stunting their ambition and opportunity. A future inventor or scientist could be a child that grew up healthy and happy because her/his/their parents had those extra dollars for life’s essentials. Not $25 million of course but enough that a child’s hopes can reach the stars.