Letter: Cut child poverty by expanding the Child Tax Credit

FILE - In a file photo, a child is lifted by her parents at a street corner in downtown Seattle.(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

Our members of Congress have the opportunity to do something very meaningful this holiday season. They can make deep cuts into child poverty while increasing the number of parents in the workforce. How? Simply by reinstating the expanded Child Tax Credit (CTC).

Child poverty dropped nearly in half in 2021 but those gains were erased when CTC payments ended in December of that calendar year, leaving too many kids going hungry through no fault of their own.

Surprisingly, when the CTC expansion ended, parental employment also dropped. That’s because the tax credit aided employment, giving parents more money for childcare, transportation and stable housing, according to research from Washington University in St. Louis.

Meanwhile, the best investment the U.S. can make to stay competitive is investing in our kids, who are much more likely to finish school and contribute to the economy, and society at large, when they aren’t mired in poverty and hopelessness.

The Child Tax Credit has a long history of bipartisan support. With so much to gain, I call on Sens. Mitt Romney and Mike Lee to support expanding the CTC with monthly payments to all low income families. What a gift this would be for so many children this holiday season!

Georgia Platts, South Jordan

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