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Monday, December 6, 2021

Looking Beyond The Stimulus Check: The Need For Sustained Support To Low-Income Citizens

The sustained support of the federal government in the form of stimulus check made the pandemic tolerable for a majority of low-income Americans.  Two-thirds of Americans were hit hard and were hard put to provide even for the basic needs of the family.

Putting food on the table and paying for rent and utilities would have been impossible for many low-wage earners if the stimulus check were not issued by the successive administrations.

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New policy changes have led to an increase in awareness of the need to support low-income families with stimulus checks, especially during tough times such as the pandemic. Issues such as gender and race have also come into focus. For instance, women are forced to shoulder a greater workload than their menfolk during tough times.

Need For Continuing With Stimulus Checks

The cumulative effect of the checks led to the lowest rate of poverty in recent times. It went down to 9% and provided a remarkable insight. Over 8.5M people were moved out from poverty through stimulus check support.

Families with children have been affected the most. The Child Tax Credit advances have given the support of $3,000 to $3,600 depending on the age of the child. These continuing stimulus checks are expected to drastically bring down levels of child poverty by up to 40%. That would mean around 4M children would be out of the clutches of poverty.

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These economic support measures have provided sufficient momentum in bringing down the level of poverty. To sustain this progress, there has to be a continuation of such policies and the implementation of fresh programs based on feedback from past distribution of stimulus checks among specific groups.

Given the present circumstances, all indicators point towards the need for additional stimulus checks to sustain citizens through the economic downturn caused by the pandemic. The federal government seems preoccupied at this stage. It is up to state and local governments to take up the initiative on behalf of its residents.

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