On June 16, 2023, First Focus on Child held a webinar, “Keep Up the Fight to Improve the Tax Code for Kids,” to discuss the importance of restoring the improvements of the Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit. Senator Brown (D-OH) explains the importance of the Child Tax Credit in his career and witnessing the poverty rate drop by 40%. Dr. Phil Fisher from the Stanford Center of Early Child Development explained that the root cause of child distress often comes from the parent’s financial stress in material hardship (food, housing, utilities, childcare, medical care, and other essential determinants). He further stated that the Child Tax Credit relieved some stressors of the pandemic because financial relief and predictability can limit the distress of a family and children.
Aubrey Edwards- Luce, First Focus on Children, and Keyona Cooper, LCSW-C, LICSW Clinical Social Worker, led a pivotal discussion on the unique barriers to financial security for youth in foster care. Specifically, those in foster care can largely experience a lack of ability to earn income, GED or high school Diploma, employment options to support themselves in their area, documents required for employment, and access to banking. Regarding the Tax Code, access to filing taxes was a concern for people in foster care. Many agencies create awareness to access the funding from Tax Code, W-2, and income policies for those in foster care. The webinar concluded with a list of resources people can use to push to improve the tax code for kids.
By Ellison Olson, Policy Intern