Millions of parents, like Tamika Daniel, have seen the child tax credit as a hollow gesture.
Thursday was a turning point when Daniel received her first $1,000 payment. Dollars began flowing into the pockets of over 35 million families across the country. Daniel, a mother of four aged 35, didn’t know that the tax credit existed until President Joe Biden extended it for one-year as part of the $1.9 billion coronavirus relief package passed in March.
The credit was previously only available to those who had enough income to pay income taxes. Daniel was without a job for almost a decade because her autistic son needed her. She survived on Social Security benefits. She had to live in Fairfield Courts, which is a public housing complex that ends at Interstate 64. This highway runs through Richmond, Virginia.
Daniel is now a Richmond non-profit community organizer, and the $1,000 extra per month could make a big difference in his life. It will be used to pay a security deposit for a new apartment.
She said, “It’s actually arriving right on time.” We have many things going on. This helps to relieve some of the pressure.
Biden has cited the new monthly payments of $423 per family as the key to halving the child poverty rate. Biden is also waging a philosophical war about government’s role and parental responsibilities.
Democrats view this program as a landmark program, much in the same vein as Social Security. They believe it will result in better outcomes for adulthood and will contribute to economic growth. However, Republicans are concerned that the payments could discourage parents from working and lead to long-term poverty.
The full credit will now be available to 15 million households. Monthly payments are $300 for children aged 5-17 years old and $250 for children aged 5-17 years. Although the payments will expire after one year, Biden wants to keep them going through at least 2025.
In the end, the president would like to make the payments permanent. This makes the first round of payments a test to see if the government can improve families’ lives.
Biden invited beneficiaries and other beneficiaries to the White House for the first round payments. He said in a Thursday speech, that the day had a historic resonance due to the boost it would give families across the country.
The president stated that this would be the largest-ever one-year drop in child poverty in American history. “Millions upon millions of children and their families are about to see their lives change, starting today. It would also make our country better.