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Jim Cawley

By Jim Cawley

Your voice, your chance to make a difference

Thu, January 26, 2017

Mother and baby

What can an extra $2,500 mean?

It could mean that a family with unstable housing can pay a security deposit on an apartment to get off the streets. It could mean that a single mom working to put food on the table can still afford to keep on track to finish her degree. It could mean that a working mother can repair her car and stay employed. It could mean that a father has the resources to help his struggling child with tutoring or counseling.

It can mean a chance at a better life.

That chance at a better life is within reach for thousands of working families in our region through the Earned Income Tax Credit, a refundable credit that can return as much as $6,318 to a qualifying family.

But the ETIC is more than a one-time budget boost. As the nation’s greatest anti-poverty program, the credit promotes work (since only working taxpayers are eligible), decreases poverty by allowing workers to keep more of what they earn and improves overall child health.

And the benefits are long-term. Research shows better academic achievement, higher college enrollment rates and better earning potential for children whose families receive the EITC.

The catch? One out of five eligible taxpayers doesn't claim the EITC, leaving millions of dollars on the table each year.

But you can make a difference:

  • Spread the word! Connect friends and families to the ETIC by telling them about free tax preparation services, like our Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program and My Free Taxes.
  • Take a stand! Your voice is a powerful tool to create change. Join us in advocating for the expansion of the ETIC and help your neighbors keep more of what they earn.

By raising our voices, we change lives and strengthen communities – one child, one adult and one family at a time.