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Press Release

United Way Highlights Public Policy Priorities for 116th Congress

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (Feb. 7, 2019) United Way Worldwide, the world’s largest mission-driven non-profit, today called on Congress to address the tough issues affecting communities across the United States, including school readiness, workforce development and access to affordable, quality healthcare for vulnerable populations.

With the start of the 116th Congress, United Way plans to advocate for policy measures that align with its key impact areas of health, education and financial stability. Additionally, United Way will also be pushing for changes to tax policy to support charitable giving incentives for millions of middle-class workers who do not itemize their taxes.  

“While our economy continues to strengthen, far too many hard-working families still struggle to provide for the basics,” said Mary B. Sellers, President, U.S. Network, United Way Worldwide. “We look forward to working with the new Congress as we advocate for policies that make our communities strong, and support our continued ability to provide vital services to those who need them most.”

United Way public policy priorities include:

Health:

  • Improved access to health insurance coverage that is affordable, accessible and adequate, and safeguarding consumer protections for all Americans.
  • Protection for a robust Medicaid program for children, seniors, people with disabilities, veterans and low-income households
  • Increased funding for Community Health Centers to support access to healthcare services for low-income, minority and rural communities
  • Increased federal resources for local communities to address the opioid epidemic

Education:

  • Increased Child Care Development Block Grant Act (CCDBG) funding to improve access to high quality child care for all children, especially for low-income children
  • Increased funding for, and access to, high quality early childhood programs via Early Head Start, Head Start, and state-sponsored Pre-K programs
  • Implementation of Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) provisions with fidelity at the state level, to protect disadvantaged groups and to ensure that families and communities are engaged in these efforts

Financial Stability:

  • Expansion of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) for workers not raising children at home and those 21 and older (lowering eligibility age from 25)
  • Increased funding for the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), national service programs that provide job experiences to young adults, and work-based learning opportunities in the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program
  • Tax policy changes to support charitable giving incentives to millions of middle-class workers who do not itemize their taxes
  • The revitalization of the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC)

To learn more about the United Way Public Policy Agenda for the 116th Congress, please visit: unitedway.org or download the report here

About United Way Worldwide

United Way fights for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community. Supported by 2.9 million volunteers, 9 million donors worldwide and $4.7 billion raised every year, United Way is the world’s largest privately-funded nonprofit. We’re engaged in 1,800 communities across more than 40 countries and territories worldwide to create sustainable solutions to the challenges facing our communities. United Way partners include global, national and local businesses, nonprofits, government, civic and faith-based organizations, along with educators, labor leaders, health providers, senior citizens, students and more.   United Way was ranked No. 1 on the Chronicle of Philanthropy’s “2018 Top 10: America’s Favorite Charities” and Forbes’ “The Largest U.S. Charities 2018.”

For more information about United Way, please visit UnitedWay.org. Follow us on Twitter: @UnitedWay and #LiveUnited.

Media Contact

Southerlyn Reisig
Director of Public Relations
United Way Worldwide
southerlyn.reisig@uww.unitedway.org
Tel. 703.836.7100 ext. 321