For nearly 25 years, the Child Tax Credit has helped eligible American families with the cost of raising children. In 2021, the American Rescue Plan included significant changes to the credit: the amount per child was increased, 26 million more children were made eligible for the benefit, and the credit became a monthly cash payment as opposed to an annual lump sum. The impact of these changes are profound with experts saying that childhood poverty could be cut in half.
In this final episode of Add Passion and Stir’s Child Tax Credit series, we explore the impact the credit is having on families and it’s role in reducing child poverty in America. Share Our Strength’s Billy Shore speaks with Kim Ford, CEO of Washington, DC-based Martha’s Table and Cailyn Thomas, Family Engagement Specialist at Martha’s Table. For Kim, the power of the credit’s direct monthly cash payments: “It’s very different when you respect someone to the point where you say, ‘this is your money and you make your own decision with it.’” We also hear from Sam Daley-Harris, an activist and founder of the international citizens’ lobby RESULTS, about the role everyone has in advocating for an extension of the credit. As Sam describes it, “Transformational advocacy is where the advocate grows and sees themselves in a new light, sees themselves in a way they never imagined possible, sees themselves as a community leader.”