Protect low-income families from devastating cuts to key services!

Thanks to your calls and letters during the fiscal showdown, many low-income families can breathe a temporary sigh of relief. On New Year’s Day, Congress voted on a deal to:

· Extend the Recovery Act’s earned income and child tax credits for five years

· Continue unemployment benefits for long-term unemployed workers

·  Raise more than $600 billion in revenue over 10 years in part by asking families earning more than $450,000 a year to go back to Clinton-era tax rates

The deal did not include any cuts to programs helping millions of struggling families such as nutrition assistance, Social Security, and Medicaid.

Unfortunately, we’re not out of the woods yet. The recent deal pushed the automatic, across-the-board cuts called “sequestration” two months forward to March 2013, setting up another fiscal showdown. It also did not raise the debt limit, which is necessary to allow our government to pay the bills it already owes. Failure to do so will result in enormous economic consequences. And while the deal’s provisions to raise taxes on families earning more than $450,000 is a good first step, it does not raise sufficient revenue by itself to avert harmful cuts in the future.

The next two months are critical. Now is the time to weigh in with your members of Congress. Urge them to avert the across-the-board cuts, which are scheduled to hit the part of the budget that houses many critical human needs programs such as Head Start, child care, and nutrition aid for pregnant women and young children. Remind them that paying our country’s bills is non-negotiable and that any future deal to cut the deficit must be balanced and protect low-income families.

Thanks to your advocacy, we were able to protect low-income families in the lame-duck session. Now we need your help again. Please join us in contacting Congress today.