Childcare prices have exploded over the last decade, and with the pandemic, options have diminished. My husband and I are both public elementary school teachers. We are able to live comfortably but not extravagantly. Affording daycare for our toddler son has pushed our budget to the limit-- we make too much to qualify for childcare aid but not enough to actually afford it. The Child Tax Credit is just enough to ease that burden. We no longer have to dip into savings (or go into debt!) to make sure our child is safe and cared for while we both work.
-Kendra from Chicago, Illinois
When the Child Tax Credit was in place, we were able to spend the money on my son's preschool, an important part of his development and key to the success he is now experiencing in kindergarten. I miss these credits because gas and groceries have gotten so much more expensive, nevermind diapers, and now I have two children. My husband had to take a new job and has taken a pay cut of $20,000 and we are now hovering around just making enough to cover expenses.
-Zoe from Lawrence, Massachusetts
The expanded CTC helps our family afford quality childcare and cover food and expenses for our family, so we can both work fulltime and focus on saving for our childrens' future!
-Angela from Lebanon, New Hampshire
My family suffers with food insecurity and because of this we've fallen behind on bills. We have to go to the clothes closet instead of being able to buy new clothes for our toddler. You never truly expect to feel like a terrible parent until your child asks for new pairs of shoes because their old pair hurt her feet and have to tell her we don't have the money to get new ones to keep food in the fridge. This extra money will mean I won't have to tell my child no for essentials others take for granted.
-Jennifer from Boone, Iowa
Every month is a struggle to pay our bills despite the fact that my wife and I both work as RNs. Our son has dyslexia and his public school doesn't provide any support services for him. In the hopes of providing him with the tools he needs to be successful in school and in his future, we pay for private tutoring twice a week. Our family has had to have tough conversations about the fact that, if money gets any tighter, we may have to stop taking him to tutoring. It feels terrible to know your son needs support, but the cost may mean he doesn't get it. The CTC could help our family continue to get our child the help he needs for his learning disability.
-Amanda from Billings, Montana
The expanded Child Tax Credit will help me send my daughter to the Montessori school I want to. As a single mom I am raising my daughter with just my income. I had my daughter right after COVID 19 hit and luckily my mom offered her help so I didn't have to send my new baby to daycare. I have been saving the tax credit so I can send her to the school I really like for at least a little while. If the CTC continues I will be able to keep sending her. The CTC means a great deal to my daughter and I.
-Kari from Albuquerque, New Mexico
We had to make many difficult decisions for our family during the pandemic. One was reducing my work hours, and therefore our income, so that we could care for our baby during isolation. When summer expenses started adding up, increased grocery bills with all three kids at home each day, and consecutive birthdays for our kids, the Child Tax Credit made a big difference for us. It let us provide for our kids the way anyone would want to, and also manage our household financial obligations despite my reduced (taxed) income. For anyone who values financial stability and family security for Idaho's children, it just makes sense to make this change to the tax credit permanent.
-Britt from Meridian, Idaho
My husband was diagnosed with ALS also known as Lou Gehrig disease. He was diagnosed right after I got pregnant with our son. So I entered into the COVID-19 pandemic with no job because I was out on maternity leave with my son. I couldn't return back to work because of COVID-19 and because of my husband's diagnosis. I have to care for him until he dies. This money has done wonders for me and my family. I soon will be a widow and single parent. I can only say this helps families who have situations similar to mine. It definitely will help single parents or people who must care for a loved one. It makes a difference!!
-Mara, Valatie, New York
Not having the CTC has affected my being able to provide anything "extra"--by extra I mean, food, clothes, utilities bills, tires, car care, medicine, vitamins, school supplies , school pictures, anything "extra." I either pay $1000 rent, on a $1600 income, or I don't have a home. It has been devastating to our family. It was the first year , my daughters did not have new school clothes and they used what supplies they had leftover, as well as backpack from prior year.
-Lori from Mckinleyville, California
My husband and I work full time jobs and have two kids to support. We are always JUST getting by, even with incredibly affordable rent and very few luxuries or superfluous expenses. We drive old cars, we go camping on our vacations, and we never hire babysitters (who seem to be charging almost as much as we do!). We've both worked for the same (successful) company for 14 years and are dismayed at how tight our budget is after all this time. With the skyrocketing prices of oil, food and general inflation, just getting by is even a struggle. The Child Tax Credit has helped us tremendously in the last couple of years- we've been dipping into our savings regularly, but the tax credit lessens that painful withdrawal. Having a reasonable sum in our savings account is what's keeping our peace of mind right now.
-Lucy from Portland, Maine
Our three children are disabled and we currently spend about $2,800 per month in medical expenses NOT covered by insurance. This money will go toward those medical expenses. It's like a lifesaver is being tossed to us since we dig into savings every month. We are now down to our last bit of savings and did not know what we were going to do until we realized that this money would be coming our way. It's going to make it so that we can stay afloat!
-Adriana from Olympia, WA
My wife delayed starting a new job in order to care for her mother, who has been in the hospital for more than 2 months. We have 3 kids in daycare, a bill that runs more than double our mortgage. The Child Tax Credit allows her to spend time with her mom, navigating the complex medical system and advocating on her behalf. That money will make a real difference in our lives while we get through this difficult period and hopefully get back to normal.
-Kyle from Portland, Oregon