U.S. Poverty Campaigns

Weekly Update | September 22, 2015

“I see the number of people living in poverty and I want to speak for the child living a life like mine and make sure they are getting what they need.”

– RESULTS Albuquerque volunteer Andy Trujillo in a September 17 letter to the editor in the New Mexico Daily Lobo

“Rather than complaining to our neighbors and coworkers about the state of the nation we must channel our concerns and visions for the future of Alaska and the United States into positive civic engagement.”

– RESULTS Alaska volunteer and REAL Change Fellow Susan Fleurant in a September 9 op-ed in the Chugiak Eagle River Star (AK)

In This Week’s Update:

Quick Action: Send a Letter to the Editor about Poverty and the EITC/CTC

Take Action!

Got Two Minutes? Use Our Online Alert to Send a Letter to the Editor about the EITC and CTC (September Action)

This month, we are working to get editorials and op-eds published in newspapers around the country about saving key provisions of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC). Thank you to everyone who has or is working on those all-important media pieces. However, we know some of you may not have time to focus on editorials and op-eds, or perhaps you haven’t found the right “hook” for one of them in your local paper. In those cases, you can still make an impact by sending a letter to the editor to your paper about the recent poverty data and the EITC/CTC. Let Congress know that their constituents care about working families – send in your letter today!

TAKE ACTION: Take two minutes to send a letter to the editor (LTE) to your local paper about saving key provisions of the EITC and CTC before they expire. Find local media outlets in the RESULTS Media Guide. Use a local story about poverty, taxes, the election, or the recent poverty data as a hook for your letter. If you’re not sure what to write, use our online LTE action to get started. Before sending it, please be sure to personalize your letter with local data and/or urging your members of Congress by name to save these provisions.

Got Ten Minutes? Follow Up with Editors and Writers about your Editorial or Op-ed Request (September Action)

Last week, the House Ways and Means Committee passed a series of tax bills that would make several business tax credits permanent. Included in this tax package was nothing about saving the 2009 provisions of the EITC and Child Tax Credit. It seems that House leaders are perfectly fine with making sure government takes care of big business, but working families are left to fend for themselves. It is imperative that members of Congress understand that no business tax credit should be made permanent without also making the EITC and CTC provisions permanent.

Saving the EITC and CTC provisions must be a part of any new tax legislation. Last week’s new poverty data reinforces that position. In 2014, the EITC and CTC lifted 9.8 million people out of poverty, including 5.2 million children. Making sure these credits remain intact must be Congress’ top priority. Help send that message but continuing your outreach to local editorial writers and editors about getting editorials and op-eds published about the EITC and CTC.

TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to follow up with your local editorial writers and editors about your editorial request and/or op-ed submission. Call or e-mail them this week to check on the status of your request (you can find media contacts in our Media Guide).  If you have yet to make your editorial request or submit your op-ed, it’s not too late. The September Action has all the information you need, including links to an introductory e-mail to a writer about doing an editorial and our updated EITC/CTC editorial packet (for more about op-ed, see below) You can also find helpful information in our September U.S. Poverty National Webinar resources. Finally, if you need help preparing for or following up on your request, or editing help with a request or op-ed, please contact Jos Linn at [email protected].

Got Twenty Minutes? Finish and Submit Your Op-ed (September Action)

You have an op-ed in you. Why? Because you take time out of your busy schedule each month to stop and advocate for the end of poverty. That takes passion.

An op-ed is putting passion to paper. You don’t have to be an expert writer or policymaker or storyteller to write an op-ed. All you need is the passion to care about an issue and the willingness to write about it. All the other stuff – the data, the wording, the request – are easy. RESULTS is here to help you with that. But it has to start with you making the decision to write one.

Right now is a good time to start. As noted above, Congress is already moving forward on making business tax credits permanent. In addition, the poverty data released last week shows that the EITC and CTC had a tremendous impact on working families last year, lifting nearly 10 million people out of poverty. Finally, we are amidst a heated presidential election where good-paying jobs and the economy are at the forefront of voters’ minds. All of these are good “hooks” for framing your op-ed (and if you don’t like any of these, we can help you brainstorm others). Even if you have no idea what to write, we have a sample op-ed you can use to get started.

So, what’s holding you back?

TAKE ACTION: We need your voice now. Take twenty minutes to draft an op-ed about the new poverty data and the EITC and CTC. The September Action has information to help you, including a link to our sample op-ed. Our National Webinar resources (including the rebroadcast recording and slides) also have good information to help you.

If you’d like to reference the new poverty data, you can find a summary of the data in this RESULTS press release. You can also find the official poverty data here and the Supplemental Poverty Measure here (which highlights the impact of the anti-poverty programs including the EITC/CTC). If you’d like state and local data, do a search in the American Community Survey FactFinder website (under Topics, select People, then Poverty and then go under Geographies to search a location). For questions about finding data, brainstorming ideas, or drafting/editing an op-ed, please contact Jos Linn at [email protected]. And once you get published, please let Jos know so we can celebrate your success!

Quick News

Invite One Person You Know to Friday’s Intro Call. Know someone you want to introduce to RESULTS? Know a potential advocate but you don’t know how to ask them to get involved? Invite them to our next RESULTS Introductory Call this Friday, September 25 at 1:00 pm ET. These 30-minute calls give new people a quick but inspiring overview of RESULTS and how they can work with us to end poverty. Think of that person you know who should join our cause and invite them to learn more on an Intro Call. Simply send them an invitation with this link (www.tinyurl.com/RESULTSIntro) and we’ll take it from there.

Confused by Different Poverty Measures? We Sort Them Out. Last week’s poverty data release from the U.S. Census provided advocates with a wealth of information about poverty in America. However, with three different data sets being released, it might seem confusing on how to interpret all that information. To help you successfully wade through it all, RESULTS U.S. Poverty Intern Tia Lewis has posted a new essay on the RESULTS Blog that explains each data source and the differences therein. We urge you to read it and hopefully it will clear any confusion you may have about the Census data.

What Did You Think of the Webinar Rebroadcast? As you know, on September 16 we held our first “rebroadcast” of our monthly National Webinar. The rebroadcast including replaying about half of the September 12 webinar and then a 30-minute Q&A with RESULTS Director of U.S. Poverty Campaigns Meredith Dodson about the new poverty data. You can find the recording and slides from the rebroadcast on our National Webinars page. If you participated, what did you think? Did you like it? We want your feedback (whether you were on the call or not). Please e-mail Jos Linn ([email protected]) to let him know if you like this idea and want us to continue it (or not).

Paul Ryan and Tim Scott Announce January Poverty Summit. Yesterday, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI-1) and Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) announced that they are inviting all presidential candidates to a forum in South Carolina on January 9 on poverty in America. "There are few challenges tougher than the fight against poverty, and we need all hands on deck," Ryan said in a statement. "I'm looking forward to exploring ideas about how we can expand opportunity in America."

Upcoming Events

Go to the RESULTS Events Calendar to see a full list of RESULTS events. Also, find a list of the RESULTS U.S. Poverty staff with contact information on the RESULTS website.

Congressional Recesses: House: October 10-19; Senate: October 10-18. Request face-to-face meetings.

RESULTS Introductory Call, September 25, at 1:00 pm ET. If you want to learn more about RESULTS, register for an upcoming Intro Call on the RESULTS website.

RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Webinar, October 10 at 12:30 pm ET. Join the meeting online at http://fuze.me/28130766 or dial in by phone at (201) 479-4595, meeting ID: 28130766#. Listen to previous conference calls and meetings on our National Webinars page.

RESULTS U.S. Poverty Free Agents Calls, October 20 at 1:00 pm and 8:00 pm ET. Join online at: http://fuze.me/27491886; or by phone at (201) 479-4595 and enter Meeting ID: 27491886. For more information, contact Jos Linn ([email protected]).

2016 RESULTS International Conference, June 25-28, 2016 in Washington, DC. Save the dates!

If you have a question, comment or suggestion for the RESULTS/RESULTS Educational Fund Board, please e-mail them to RESULTS Grassroots Board Member Lydia Pendley at [email protected]. You can download RESULTS’ most recent Annual Report at: http://www.results.org/about/annual_report/.

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