It made life better for many families and then it was gone.
Losing the monthly payments from the Expanded Child Tax Credit has been devastating. The credit provided income stability, food on the table, less debt, less stressed-out parents, and opportunities for fun. Regardless of your situation, if you received it, you put it to whatever use was needed for your family at that time.
The amount received was not enough for luxury vacations or other splurges, it was enough for day-to-day things like groceries, childcare, home and car repairs, eating out, extracurricular activities for kids, school uniforms, etc… That is exactly what it was being spent on.
Although the pandemic restrictions are lifting, we are still in hard financial times. Inflation is at an average of 7.9% today. Families are paying more for essential items every day with no financial support from our government. Are children safe without this incentive? Are their emotional, physical, and spiritual needs being sacrificed?
It is true that there is a larger credit being given during tax time for each child until 2025, but some families cannot wait to get support once a year. They need to survive and thrive monthly.
Why is it that when something was working so well, it was so short-lived? Other countries offer this support non-stop, Germany, the UK, Denmark, Turkey, and Ireland. The primary requirement is a residency and sometimes employment. Aside from that, there are no income requirements. The deal was better in the United States in that families had the option to waive the monthly payment option if they prefer to wait until tax time.
During the time that the Child Tax Credit was in effect (six months), there was an impact. Child poverty decreased. Children were happier because their parents were happier and less stressed. They had access to opportunities that perhaps they would not have had without the monthly installments that their parents received.
This may not have benefited you directly, but it sure did benefit 61 million children. As a country, we should advocate for the well-being of all. Offering this benefit again will do just that.