In response to Governor Brown’s May Revise budget proposal released today, Alex Johnson, Executive Director of Children’s Defense Fund-California, issued this statement:
“Governor Brown has taken a positive first step to reduce California’s highest-in-the-nation child poverty rate by proposing a state Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) that will help working poor families make ends meet. We are pleased that Governor Brown is recognizing the urgency of addressing the state’s child poverty crisis and proposing some relief for Californians who have not seen the benefits of the economic recovery.
“Growing up poor negatively impacts the entire trajectory of a child’s life and reinforces a generational cycle of poverty that steals hope and opportunity from our most vulnerable children. California needs a bold, comprehensive multi-year plan to end child poverty – and with state revenue surging, we have the resources to make a commitment to end the suffering of California’s poor children and enable them to meet their full potential.
“The Governor’s May Revise includes significant new resources for K–12 education, which is a critical investment in the state’s schools after years of underfunding. We know that children don’t come in pieces, and it is crucial to support policies and budget investments that support the whole child. California also needs to address the root causes of educational gaps – we know children also need health care, quality child care and early education, and family supports to survive and flourish.
“We urge the Legislature to build upon the Governor’s promising proposal to address poverty through the state EITC by making additional investments to rebuild the state’s tattered safety net – still struggling under recession-era cuts – and invest in the health care and child care children need to succeed.”