- The issue: Forty percent of women, and women of color, in particular, were forced to leave the workforce due to caregiving demands related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The health crisis laid bare the lack of structural support and systemic inequalities that have long been present in our nation.
- The good news: The American Families Plan, in tandem with The American Jobs Plan, seeks to invest in children and families with the goal of providing basic resources to those in need, reducing child poverty, and creating a healthier workforce.
- Our task: The plans become reality through legislation, which has yet to be drafted. Tell Congress that in addition to the policies laid out in the president’s plans, comprehensive legislation to rebuild the economy must prioritize and center our most vulnerable families.
The American Jobs Plan and American Families Plan proposed by President Biden represent a once-in-a-generation opportunity to rebuild our economy in a way that centers those most harmed by both the COVID-19 pandemic and our nation’s structural inequalities — women, and in particular, women of color. These plans, which together address our country’s physical and human infrastructure needs, are critical to our nation’s recovery and future. Many NCJW priorities are reflected in the plans, including paid family and medical leave, investments in child care and education, expanded nutrition assistance, tax credits to lower health insurance premiums, and an extension of the expanded child tax credit (CTC). As Congress works to craft the legislation based on these plans, it is critical that we continue to advocate for making the extended child tax credit permanent, implementing policies guaranteeing access to and facilitating enrollment in affordable and comprehensive health coverage, and including a path to citizenship for Dreamers, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients, and essential workers.
After years of under-investing in women and people of color, Congress must make a bold effort to build back an economy that works for all of us. We cannot have recovery without both plans — we cannot rebuild our economy, confront racial inequality, and reduce poverty without investing in our institutions and in our communities.