Advancing Health Equity Through the Child Tax Credit Expansion

Advancing Health Equity Through the Child Tax Credit Expansion

The Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act would expand the child tax credit to millions more children in families with low incomes.

Congress is currently considering the bipartisan Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act, a crucial bill that proposes to expand the child tax credit to millions more children in families with low incomes. This bipartisan legislation represents a significant opportunity to help America’s children living in poverty.

The child tax credit is one of the most effective tools to combat child poverty in the federal policy toolbox. It provides low-income families with a tax refund to help cover child-rearing costs. This bill would take needed steps to help American families by increasing the refundability of the child tax credit, meaning that those who need this money the most would receive more dollars in their pocket.

In addition, the bill ensures that the government considers the number of children in a family when calculating a qualifying income, ensuring additional support for families with more than one child.

Simply put, expanding the child tax credit would reduce child poverty in the United States. More than 16 million children would benefit from the expansion in the first year, including 400,000 children who would be lifted above the poverty line.

Every day across children’s hospitals and health systems, we see the impact that poverty has on children’s lives and their families, and there is no question that increased financial support, including from the child tax credit, correlates to better health outcomes for patients. At Children’s Hospital Association, we are advocating for the bipartisan Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act because lifting children out of poverty can lead to better access to health care, improved nutrition, and more stable living conditions, factors that are crucial for the healthy development of children.

The child tax credit has historically enjoyed broad bipartisan support with expansions of the credit being signed into law under both Republican and Democratic presidents. The current expansion Congress is considering is no exception, passing through the House of Representatives with bipartisan support on Jan. 31.

The bipartisan action taken by the House is progress, but the Senate must pass the bill immediately and send it to the president’s desk. The millions of children whose well-being would be improved depend on it.

Written By:
Elizabeth Brown
Vice President, Federal Affairs, Children's Hospital Association
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Children’s Hospital Association is the national voice of more than 220 children’s hospitals, advancing child health through innovation in the quality, cost and delivery of care.