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2020 Wins for the End Child Poverty California Movement

We want to share End Child Poverty California movement wins from the most recent California budget.

In spite of the fact that this continues to be an incredibly difficult year, we are moving forward together. We’re proud to work with such a phenomenal group of partners, parents and advocates. We believe ALL our children deserve to be healthy, housed and fed.

On June 29, 2020, California’s newest state budget was finalized. For the first time ever, undocumented families are included in the poverty-fighting CalEITC cash-back tax credit.

This means money going directly to working families who have been left out of economic relief and necessary income supports during the COVID-19 pandemic. We know this money will be used in local communities. We know it will support some of our most vulnerable undocumented families who urgently need money for food, bills, and health care.

End Child Poverty California quote box: For the first time ever, undocumented families with young children are included in the poverty-fighting 
CalEITC cash-back tax credit

The CalEITC tax credit change applies to undocumented families who have children under six, and who file taxes using an Individual Tax Identification Number. These families don’t have Social Security Numbers, but they pay taxes. The change also includes the $1,000 Young Child Tax Credit for any family with children under six earning $1 or more. These changes go into effect next year. For the first time, ALL California families with young children who file taxes and make less than about $30,000 per year will be eligible for these life-saving credits.

We will continue working hard alongside our partners and the CalEITC Coalition and the Safety Net For All Coalition (a network of over 125 organizations) so that more California families can be included in immediate and ongoing relief.

And there is more good news: Both of our End Child Poverty California Senate bills passed out of the State Senate with bipartisan support!

Senate Bill 1103: Workforce Support Services for Californians (Authored by Sen. Melissa Hurtado)

Many promising youth and community members haven’t been able to complete career training programs that lead to higher wage jobs and a path out of poverty, due to the daily challenges of living in poverty. These include lack of child care, commutes of two- to three-hours each way, and the need to work multiple low-wage jobs to support their families while going to training. 

End Child Poverty California Senate Bill 1103 quote from Alma Moreno of Sanger: Many of us have wanted to go back to school but the lack of child care and support makes it very difficult. It’s very difficult to take night classes when you don’t have transportation or resources. We would like to have a brighter future and fight child poverty in California. On behalf of the California Farmworkers Foundation, we strongly support SB 1103.

SB 1103 by Senator Melissa Hurtado (D – Fresno, Kern, Kings and Tulare Counties) creates the High Roads Workforce Training Program that addresses the issues that stop people from graduating. This is an important commitment to families and brighter futures. SB 1103 is particularly important to California’s economic recovery from COVID-19.

Read Alicia’s and Lesly’s stories about why SB 1103 is so important.

Senate Bill 1409: CalEITC Tax Credit Auto-filing Pilot for Families with Low Incomes (Authored by Senator Anna Caballero)

We know that many families earn so little that they are not required to file taxes, yet they are eligible for the CalEITC tax credit and Young Child Tax Credit that would help them with stability and basic necessities. 

SB 1409 authored by Senator Caballero (D – Salinas Valley and parts of the Central Valley) seeks to develop efficiencies in tax filing, so that families can directly receive their CA EITC  and other tax benefits.  Research has shown that as much as $2 Billion State and Federal Tax Credits are left unclaimed.  This bill would cut through bureaucracy and would create methods for direct payments to families.

End Child Poverty California Senate Bill 1409 quote from Senator Anna Caballero: Many of California’s most economically fragile households do not receive CalEITC because they may be unaware they qualify for this critical tax credit or simply do not file a tax return because they earn too little.

This crisis has had an outsized impact on our families in poverty and together we can make sure we change the way we support and create opportunities for families. Looking forward to sharing more good news in support of children and families soon.

More California budget news and analysis from partners:


End Child Poverty CA Coalition 2019-2020 Budget Wins

The final California state budget allocates almost $5 billion toward investments called for in the State Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Task Force’s End Child Poverty Plan.

State legislation created the Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Task Force to develop an anti-poverty plan that was released just before the new governor and legislature took their oaths of office in January. The End Child Poverty in California Coalition of 50+ partners rallied people, organizations and elected officials to adopt the Task Force’s End Child Poverty Plan, which would end deep child poverty in just four years when fully implemented. The End Child Poverty Plan would also reduce overall child poverty by 50 percent over the next decade.

As a result, the final state budget includes unprecedented investments to address deep child poverty. Furthermore, several pieces of legislation and budget proposals have been introduced to implement the comprehensive End Child Poverty Plan.

“This budget represents an unprecedented strategic investment to address poverty and inequality in California. Make no mistake, however — this is a down payment. Fully funding the Task Force’s plan would end deep child poverty in California in four years, and our campaign will keep working with our elected officials and all Californians to do just that. Thank you to the Governor and the Legislature with leaders on both sides of the aisle and across the political spectrum for their unprecedented action to help kids and families,” said Conway Collis, co-chair of the Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Task Force, and CEO of GRACE and End Child Poverty in California.

450,000 California children live in deep child poverty. If concentrated as a population, those children would comprise the state’s eighth largest city — larger than Oakland, twice as large as San Bernardino, and just smaller than Long Beach. When fully realized, savings generated by lifting these children from poverty would total $12 billion annually, on an ongoing basis, representing a dramatic return on investment.

“We could not have done this without the broad-based coalition of anti-poverty advocates, faith-based organizations, non-profits, education advocates, business and labor who worked tirelessly to build support for this important victory. This budget is a reflection of the beginning of a sea change, with ending child poverty in California, as the Governor has stated, his North Star.  We have more to do, but this is a significant step in the right direction and we are looking forward to continuing our work with this coalition, the legislature and the Governor,” said Jackie Thu-Huong Wong, Vice President for Policy and Advocacy at GRACE and End Child Poverty in California.

California has the highest number of children and highest percentage of children living in poverty of any state in the nation — almost 2 million children, who represent one out of every five California kids. Deep poverty is defined as families living at or below 50 percent of the federal poverty line, or less than about $12,500 for a family of four. In addition, 204,000 California children experience homelessness.

Infographic: Key End Child Poverty CA Coalition Budget Wins

Additional CA Budget Information & Reactions

  • State budget analysis from our coalition partner Western Center on Law & Poverty: click here.
  • Budget statement from CalEITC4Me on the California Earned Income Tax Credit expansion: click here.
  • Statement on child care wins from our coalition partners Parent Voices & Child Care Law Center: click here.
  • Article in Vox on the CalEITC expansion in California and its national relevance: click here.
  • Additional information on the End Child Poverty Plan: click here.
    LA Times story on the release of the End Child Poverty Plan: click here.


AB 1520 Passes Senate Human Services Committee

On Tuesday, The Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Act (AB 1520) passed the Senate Human Services Committee by a unanimous and bipartisan vote.

Since its introduction, AB 1520 has been amended to create a statewide task force made up of leaders inside and outside of government charged with developing a comprehensive, data-driven plan to eliminate deep child poverty and reduce overall child poverty by 50% over 20 years.

This is a significant and necessary step forward for California. Sign on to support this legislation.

California has the highest rate of child poverty in the nation—affecting 1.9 million children. Although some progress has been made in reducing poverty, we still have higher rates of child poverty today than we did 10 years ago.

The AB 1520 task force is an important first step because it creates a road map for California to set a model for the nation to dramatically reduce child poverty.

AB 1520 now progresses to the Senate Appropriations Committee and hopefully to the governor’s desk soon, but we need your help to continue to build momentum to ensure its passage.

If you haven’t done so already, sign on to support AB 1520 today and share this development on Facebook and Twitter!

AB 1520 is heard at the Senate Human Services Committee meeting in Sacramento. Photo: Sandra Sanchez


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