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June 10th Newsletter – MASSCAP

Massachusetts Association for Community Action

Road to Opportunity: Finding the Way Forward
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MASSCAP newsletter – June 10, 2020

INTRODUCING OUR NEW VIDEO SERIES: SERVICE AND RECOVERY IN THE TIME OF COVID-19
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Episode #1

Pace New Bedford
#CommunityActionWorks

DID YOU KNOW: We are OPEN and READY TO SERVE
  • The effects of the pandemic continue to compound the needs of the people we serve as well as many families seeking help for the first time.
  • The programs we run and services we provide are even more important now to help stabilize lives.
  • Prior to the pandemic, 1 in 11 MA households were Food Insecure.  Currently, access to and affordability of food has increased dramatically.
  • Across the Commonwealth, VITA sites not only provide free tax prep (including virtual VITA), but also provide access to the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Child Tax Credit (CTC) as well as other tax credits.
  • The EITC and the Child Tax Credit have kept 150,000 people out of poverty in MA by helping them to bridge the wage gap.
PUBLIC POLICY MATTERS

The state funding for policy and programs are crucial in finding the way forward in Massachusetts, especially now when so many are being negatively impacted by COVID-19.  Part of our response must include supporting public policies that will help our vulnerable friends and neighbors living with low incomes to weather this very trying period.

Please join us in supporting our TOP FY21 Priorities that will strengthen our social safety net now and into the future.

Bridging the Wage Gap
Provide resources for Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Sites across the Commonwealth ($800K).  Learn more at www.masscap.org/freetaxprep.

Creating a Foundation for Economic Opportunity
Create State Fuel Assistance Line Item ($10M).  Learn more at heatinghelpma.org.

Strengthening Families through Affordable and Accessible Early Education and Care
Increase Head Start Line Item (3000-5000): $15M

Support Early Education Teacher Salary Line Item (3000-1042)

MAKING A DIFFERENCE ACROSS MA

Community Action Agencies across the state are addressing Food Insecurity
Special thanks to the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) for recognizing that there is an urgent and increasing need for food due to the pandemic, and for providing our network with additional resources to address food insecurity.

PACE operates a mobile food pantry in the greater New Bedford area increasing access to food for those in need.  Check PACE out on Facebook for more information on the schedule or call  508-999-9920.

Worcester Community Action Council (WCAC) is helping to provide hot meals to COVID+ individuals in the Main South neighborhood in Worcester.  WCAC is also operating a "virtual" food pantry for their Job & Education Center clients, providing the resources for them to go grocery shopping including resources for transportation.

South Shore Community Action Council (SSCAC) teamed up with  The Cape Cod Family Table Collaborative and Cape Cod 5 on a "Dinner Drive Through" event, providing nutritious meals and bagged food to those in need.  Learn more about SSCAC's Food Resources Program and Distribution Center.

CONTINUING THE CONVERSATION

Free Tax Prep is available at Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites.  Find your Community Action VITA site at masscap.org/freetaxprep.

We urge you to support the FY21 priorities so that together we can move forward on the road to opportunity. Visit our Public Policy Priorities webpage.

Get Everyone Counted: Census 2020!  Federal funding is at stake!  Health care, education, and emergency planning all depend on getting an accurate census count.

www.masscap.org

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