Families can claim the remainder of the credit by filing taxes with the IRS beginning January 24
PHILADELPHIA – The Office of Community Empowerment and Opportunity (CEO) and Thomas Scattergood Behavioral Health Foundation (Scattergood) announced today that 17 local organizations will receive a total of $192,000 in City funding to conduct grassroots outreach to maximize the number of Philadelphia households claiming the newly expanded federal Child Tax Credit.
President Biden’s American Rescue Plan, passed last March, increased the Child Tax Credit from $2,000 per child to $3,000 per child for children over the age of six, and from $2,000 to $3,600 for children under the age of six. Many families received advance Child Tax Credit payments between July and December 2021 but must file their federal income taxes to claim the other half. Parents and guardians that missed out on the advanced payments will have an opportunity to claim the full credit they are owed by filing with the IRS beginning Jan. 24.
“The expanded Child Tax Credit could help more than 75,000 Philadelphians move out of poverty, so we invested $1.5 million in American Rescue Plan funding towards outreach and enrollment with community-based partners.” Mayor Kenney said. “By focusing on harder-to-reach populations, we will advance racial equity in implementing the Child Tax Credit, which is one of the most impactful anti-poverty programs in a generation.”
“The advance payments have helped thousands of Philadelphia families put food on the table, and keep the utilities on, but there are many more families out there that we still need to reach,” said Mitchell Little, Executive Director of CEO, which has coordinated the City’s outreach along with the Mayor’s office. “Partnering with these local organizations that are already serving families with low incomes will enhance our outreach by adding trusted messengers who have a track record of offering critical benefits and services and who can connect families with our tax preparation partners.”
The City estimates that if every eligible Philadelphian receives the credit, it could lift an estimated 75,000 Philadelphians out of poverty and cut deep child poverty in half. Many Philadelphia households are at risk of not receiving the Child Tax Credit (CTC) payments because they do not typically file taxes due to having little or no income.
“At the Thomas Scattergood Foundation, we support organizations and programs that incorporate principles of diversity, equity and inclusion, and trauma-informed practice. Providing grants to these 17 community-based organizations will bring about collaboration and give families the means to improve their emotional and financial health and wellbeing,” said Joe Pyle, MA, President of Scattergood.
The grantees are expected to educate the community about the credit, connect individuals to trusted organizations that can help them claim the credit for free, and/or help them access non-filer portals to claim the credit. The grants range from $1,000 to $20,000 and will come from the City’s General Fund. A full list of recipients can be found below.
“For more than 40 years, Maternity Care Coalition has been advocating for and serving families, particularly those in neighborhoods with high rates of poverty, infant mortality, health disparities, and changing immigration patterns. The advance Child Tax Credit payments have already had a positive impact on families, and ensuring that families receive the remainder of the payments will help parents and children thrive. Maternity Care Coalition is proud to be part of this effort,” said Marianne Fray, CEO of Maternity Care Coalition, one of the grantees.
“We thank the nearly 40 organizations that applied,” Little added. “We wish we could have funded them all, but we believe the groups chosen are incredibly diverse, both in terms of the populations they serve and the areas of the city they represent, and will enable us to reach those families who will benefit the most.”
CEO also called on Congress to extend the CTC for another year and work to make it permanent. According to research from the Center on Poverty and Social Policy at Columbia University, the CTC reduced child poverty by 29 percent across the U.S. in November alone. The Build Back Better Act, which passed the U.S. House, contains a one-year extension of the credit but has been blocked in the Senate.
“It is alarming that Congress would send millions of families back into poverty because they fail to extend the CTC. Failure to act means more hunger, more housing instability, and poorer outcomes for kids,” concluded Little.
- Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corp.
- Norris Square Community Alliance
- Maternity Care Coalition
- Coalition of African and Caribbean Communities (AFRICOM)
- Women in Dialogue
- Institute for the Development of African American Youth
- Impact Services
- Hunting Park Neighborhood Advisory Committee/Community Revitalization Corp.
- African Family Health Organization
- Why Not Prosper
- Supportive Older Women’s Network (SOWN)
- IHM Center for Literacy
- Families Forward Philadelphia
About the Office of Community Empowerment and Opportunity (CEO)
CEO provides leadership on issues of economic justice by advancing racial equity and inclusive growth to ensure that all Philadelphians might share in the city’s prosperous future. It serves as the Community Action Agency (CAA) for the City of Philadelphia. As a CAA, CEO awards Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) funds to more than 20 programs that serve an estimated 40,000 residents each year, with a focus on benefits access, financial empowerment, housing security, and other priorities that may emerge over time.