LETTER: A chance for a better future

To the editor:

On September 13, 2016, the Census Bureau released its latest income and
poverty data.  The good news was that 3.5 million fewer Americans lived in poverty in 2015 compared to 2014.  In addition, the poverty rate for
children also dropped from 21.1 percent to 19.7 percent.  This is good
newsâ•"no doubt about it.  But we still have one in ten US households
trying to make ends meet with incomes below $13,300 last year.  We still
have one in seven Americans living below the federal poverty line (just
over $24,000 for a family of four).  And sadly, we still have almost one
in five American children living in poverty.  But the candidates for
president did not address the issue of poverty in their  debate on
September 26,2016.

So what can we do about this?  As candidates vie for our votes in the
upcoming elections, we must demand that they start to address the issue of
poverty by expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), which, along
with the Child Tax Credit, lifted 9.2 million people out of poverty in
2015.  The problem is that the EITC currently excludes millions of younger
workers and others not raising children.  Expanding the EITC has wide
bipartisan support, including from President Obama and House Speaker Paul
Ryan.  So let˙s make sure that whatever happens in November our Congress
and new president take action to make sure that all hardworking Americans
have a chance for a better future.

Zelda Foxall

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