U.S. Poverty Weekly Update July 23, 2013

“I felt a part of this family when I first heard the word RESULTS.”

– Nobel Peace Prize Winner Prof. Muhammad Yunus, speaking at the 2013 RESULTS International Conference [You can follow the conference on RESULTS Facebook page and on Twitter via @RESULTS_Tweets and #RESULTSConf

New and Urgent in This Week's Update (Two-Ten-Twenty Actions)

Organizational Updates

 

Got Two Minutes? Reinforce Hundreds of RESULTS Volunteers on Capitol Hill Today – Tell Senators to Support Low-income Americans in Tax Reform

Hundreds of RESULTS advocates and allies are on Capitol Hill today, meeting with dozens of senators and over 200 House offices. Today’s lobby visits come at a key time – Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) and Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-UT) are seeking input about tax reform from their colleagues by THIS FRIDAY, June 26. This is an important opportunity to reiterate our support for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Child Tax Credit (CTC) and specifically request that 2009 improvements to these credits be made permanent. This also gives us the opportunity to advocate for asset building policies and the Financial Security Credit. You can amplify the message that RESULTS volunteers are delivering in lobby meetings by weighing in with Senate offices via phone today!

TAKE ACTION: Take two minutes to call your Senate tax aide to weigh in about tax reform if you are not in DC to deliver the message in person. Because of the July 26 deadline, we urge you to pick up that phone today, and make sure you follow up later this week. Here are talking points you can adapt for your calls:

I am a constituent and a RESULTS volunteer. As Congress works on comprehensive tax reform, I urge Sen. __________________ to speak up in support of tax policies that benefit low-income working families. The Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit are a financial lifeline for millions of families; these credits lift more children out of poverty than any other program. They also promote work and support local economies. In addition, helping families build savings and assets is one of the surest pathways out of poverty. The Financial Security Credit (first proposed as the Saver's Bonus by Sen. Bob Menendez in 2008), would help low-income tax filers start a matched savings account right on their tax returns. Since 2008, a similar program called $aveNYC (now $aveUSA) has been helping low-income people start savings accounts with great success.

Before July 26, please have Sen. ____________send a letter to Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus and Ranking Member Orrin Hatch urging them to:

  1. Support hardworking low-income families by making the 2009 ARRA improvements to the EITC and CTC permanent and protecting these credits from cuts in tax reform.

  2. Expand low-income asset building in the tax code by including the Financial Security Credit in tax reform.

Our updated tax and assets lobby request sheet has more information you can use for your calls. Calls are best but it you cannot call this week, use our updated tax credit e-mail alert to urge your members of Congress to protect low-income working families in tax reform. You can also voice your opinion about tax reform at www.taxreform.gov.

See the latest about our Economic Opportunity Campaign on the Recent Developments in Economic Opportunity Legislation and our 2013 U.S. Poverty Campaign Summary.

 

Got Ten Minutes? Set Up Your Lobby Meetings for the August Recess (July Action)

In addition to the hundreds of lobby visits happening today in Washington as a part of the RESULTS International Conference, members of Congress will be on recess most of the month of August doing constituent meetings and town hall events. This will be the last major recess before big decisions on the budget and debt ceiling have to be made in the fall, so we want to make sure we talk to them before then.

As we heard in Washington from former Representatives Hall and Walsh yesterday, we as constituents have tremendous influence over policymakers – and we need to make sure the voices of real experts, those impacted by poverty in our communities, are a part of the conversation. Make sure Congress hears from you next month by requesting a district meeting; once you get your meetings scheduled, please enter them into our Lobby Meeting tracking form.

TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to complete the July Action and set up your face-to-face meetings for the August recess. Contact your House and Senate schedulers to set up your meetings. Find their names and contact information on our Elected Officials page. So that you are well prepared, here are additional resources to help you:

If you get a meeting set up, please contact RESULTS U.S. Poverty Staff for help preparing.

 

Got Twenty Minutes? Back up Fellow RESULTS Volunteers Working to Protect SNAP (formerly Food Stamps)

RESULTS volunteers are on Capitol Hill at a critical time for hungry families. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) was removed from the House-passed Farm Bill. The path forward is not clear – the House could try to pass a bill with deep cuts to SNAP and then try to work out a compromise with the Senate, somehow let the $4.5 billion in cuts to SNAP in the Senate become law, or it could use the impending debt ceiling or 2014 budget votes to ransom deep cuts to SNAP. What is clear is that SNAP is still very much in danger and we have to do all we can to protect it. In your calls, e-mails, and meetings, the message is simple – protect and strengthen SNAP.

TAKE ACTION: In addition to urging Congress to protect SNAP in face-to-face lobby meetings in DC and back home and in the media to keep the pressure on Congress to protect SNAP. Contact your representatives and senators urging them to protect SNAP from cuts using our online e-mail action. Finally, make sure to make SNAP a top priority in your upcoming lobby meetings. Print off and take our SNAP Lobby Meeting Request Sheet with you to your meeting. For more information about SNAP and the Farm Bill, see our Recent Developments in Nutrition and Health Legislation page and our 2013 U.S. Poverty Campaign Summary.

We also want to thank everyone who submitted media pieces on SNAP over the last six weeks. You all got 28 pieces published! This is outstanding media advocacy and already we’ve exceeded our total media pieces this year (59) from all our generated media in 2012 (49). Here is a list of the people who got SNAP media published recently (in order of publication). Congratulations!

Keep it up by submitting your SNAP letter to the editor using our updated online LTE alert!

 

RESULTS U.S. Poverty Staff Taking a Few Days Rest

After a wonderfully successful RESULTS International Conference, the RESULTS U.S. Poverty Staff is taking some much-needed time off. Our U.S. Poverty staff will be out of the office Thursday and Friday, July 25 and 26 (Acting Director of U.S. Poverty Campaigns Jos Linn will out of the office through August 4). Meanwhile, Meredith Dodson will resume maternity leave after attending the conference (she returns after Labor Day). If you have questions or need assistance with our legislative campaigns, please contact Katja Kleine ([email protected]) or Ann Beltran ([email protected]) beginning Monday, July 29. If you have questions about outreach, please contact Jenny Martin ([email protected]) or Myrdin Thompson ([email protected]) beginning Monday, July 29.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

 

RESULTS Activity Calendar

(See a complete calendar on the RESULTS website)

Upcoming Congressional Recesses: House and Senate: August 5 – September 6. Request face-to-face meetings.

Saturday, July 20 - Tuesday, July 23: 2013 RESULTS International Conference, Washington, DC. Register today!

Saturday, August 10: RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Conference Call, 12:30 pm ET. Listen to previous conference calls online.

Wednesday, August 14: RESULTS Introductory Call, 9:00 pm ET. Register for this or another Intro Call at www.tinyurl.com/RESULTSMeetandGreet/.

Saturday, August 17: RESULTS Outreach Meeting, 10:00am – Noon ET. Burlington Unitarian Universalist Society, Parlor Room, 152 Pearl Street, Burlington, VT. Contact Jenny Martin ([email protected]) for details.

Tuesday, August 20: RESULTS U.S. Poverty Free Agents Call, 9:00 pm ET. (218) 486-1611, passcode RESULTS (7378587, plus #).

Wednesday, September 18: RESULTS Kansas City Outreach Meeting, 7:00 pm CT. For more details, contact Jos Linn at (515) 288-3622, [email protected]. See more on Facebook.

 

RESULTS Contact Information

Main Office: (p) (202) 783-7100, (f) (202) 466-1397, 1730 Rhode Island Ave, NW, Suite 400, Washington, DC 20036. If mailing a donation to our DC office, please address the envelope to the attention of Cynthia Stancil. Please note that RESULTS Director of U.S. Poverty Campaigns Meredith Dodson is on maternity leave until Labor Day 2013.

RESULTS U.S. Poverty Legislative and Grassroots Support Staff:

The RESULTS U.S. Poverty Update is sent out every Tuesday via email to RESULTS volunteers and allies all over the country. The purpose of these updates is to inform and activate RESULTS activists to take action on our U.S. poverty campaigns.