Tell Congress to make the monthly Child Tax Credit permanent for families like mine

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My name’s Mea -- I’m a parent who, like many others, has shouldered the financial burden of this pandemic for well over a year now for the sake of my family. I have two sons who mean the world to me.

My youngest son is autistic and non-verbal, which sometimes presents financial challenges for my husband and I. I’m not able to work at the moment, and neither is my husband.

Our local school district isn’t properly equipped to care for some of his behaviors, and as he got older and stronger it became a safety issue. It was no longer possible for him to remain in class even with two parapros, his teacher, and multiple staff on hand for his worse days. Now at home it’s just us, on hand to love and look after him 24/7. Further complicating matters, my husband has his own share of health issues.

The American Rescue Plan includes monthly checks to parents that begin on July 1st. It’s designed to help parents like me with monthly checks of $300 for children under 6, and $250 for children aged 6-17.

When I heard the news that this law would be sending monthly help to parents, I was overjoyed. It struck me as a beautiful investment in the well being of our children, and though my oldest will turn 18 soon and be phased out, I still want that investment in children to be something that parents and future parents can depend on.

That’s why I’m calling on Congress to make monthly checks to parents a permanent policy for Americans that extends beyond the pandemic.

The expanded child tax credit is expected to cut child poverty by more than half over the next year. I can hardly imagine a better use of the money that we send to Washington each year than to spend it on lifting millions of families out of poverty.

This law does not outsource parenting, or make the job of raising children anything other than the labor of love it already was. What it does do is make that labor of love a little easier from month to month. Groceries, clothes, school supplies and all the other costs of raising our kids add up every month, and an extra financial cushion can go a long way.

We’ve already heard leaders in Washington show support for a long-lasting policy like this to support families, from Leader Schumer and Senator Romney to President Biden. All that I’m asking for now is that they turn that support into action.

We can be the generation of Americans that made child poverty a shadow of its former self. Congress, make the monthly child tax credit permanent to secure a better future for millions of our kids.