Massachusetts Association for Community Action
Road to Opportunity: Finding the Way Forward
- 10% Poverty Rate and 14% Child Poverty Rate in MA according to the Federal Poverty Line
- If you include those that are "near poor" (up to twice the Federal Poverty Rate): 22% "Near Poor" and 27% Children "Near Poor" in MA
- The EITC and the Child Tax Credit CTC (VITA sites provide access) have kept 150,000 people out of poverty in MA by helping them to bridge the wage gap.
- 44% of Americans cannot cover a $400 unexpected expense.
- Our 1.4 M children in MA will thrive when they are healthy, receive a great education, parents/caretakers have well-paying jobs and they live in flourishing communities.
- 1 in 10 households in MA are "Food Insecure.” Children can't learn and develop when they are hungry.
- Head Start served more than 15,000 children last year - which is only 29% of income eligible 3-5 year olds - not only providing a safe and stable learning environment but also access to other services critical to health and well-being of the whole family.
More information and access the data: Obstacles on the Road to Opportunity: Finding a Way Forward, May 2018
Learn more! Watch our webinar What We All Need to Know About Poverty in Massachusetts – featuring report author, Nancy Wagman, Kids Count Director, MassBudget.
The state support and funding for policies and programs that create opportunity is critical. We are advocating for policies that strengthen families, bridge the wage gap, create economic opportunity and strengthen the human services infrastructure.
We thank both the House and the Senate for their hard work in the FY20 budget process and the inclusion of so many important resources. We hope to see the following essential line items in your final conference report – see newsletter for the items included under:
- Bridging the Wage Gap
- Strengthening Families through Affordable & Accessible Early Education and Care
- Creating a Foundation for Economic Opportunity
Thanks to the help of Early Head Start (EHS) program at Lynn Economic Opportunity Inc. (LEO), Victory is now walking, jumping, eating all his foods and learning. After being diagnosed with Global Developmental Delays, Victory entered the program at two years old only able to crawl and eat pureed foods. He had no words. The EHS team worked intensely with his family and an early intervention team. A year later, Victory is a happy guy, laughing and bright, singing his ABCs, counting to 20 and reciting Nursery Rhymes. He will be ready for public school.
We urge you to support the FY20 priorities so that together we can move forward on the road to opportunity. Visit our Public Policy Priorities page for more information.