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 United Way fights for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community.In 2018, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that household incomes in America continue to rise and the rate of poverty continues to decline. While these gains are encouraging, close to 40 million Americans are still in poverty. We know that communities are stronger when every individual and family, regardless of race or socioeconomic status, is financially stable and has the opportunity for economic mobility. The United Way network invests in and supports a variety of programs that help workers secure and maintain employment, access tax credits, find stable housing, and build savings and assets for the long-term, including through local and state policy efforts.


To ensure 5 million Americans are financially stable and have better paying jobs by 2028, United Way will fight for:
  • Strengthen workforce development programs and expand job training and work-based learning.
    • Investments in high quality education and job training programs for 16-to-24-year-olds who are not in school or work
    • Apprenticeships and work-based learning opportunities that allow older youth and low-income workers to gain work experience that improves job placement.
    • Increased funding for the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), national service programs that provide valuable job experiences to young adults, and work-based learning opportunities in the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program.
    • Incentivized sector-based strategies that help meet employer demand for a more educated and skilled workplace.
  • Protect and expand the Earned Income Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit and increase access to the tax credits through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance grant program.
    • Expansion of the Earned Income Tax Credit for workers not raising children at home and those 21 and older (lowering eligibility age from 25).
    • A Child Tax Credit that ensures the lowest income workers and families with young children can access a robust credit. 
    • Permanent authorization of the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance grant program and increased investments in this public-private partnership.
    • Incentivized sector-based strategies that help meet employer demand for a more educated and skilled workforce. 
  • Strengthen SNAP, Child Nutrition Programs, and other nutrition-related income supports.
    • Protecting SNAP’s integrity and ensuring intended beneficiaries continue to have access to SNAP.
    • Child Nutrition program reauthorization that protects and strengthens access to healthy food.
    • Increased funding for WIC.
  • Support policies to improve the nation’s affordable and emergency housing options and supports.

    Funding and protection of the Section 8 Housing Program and the HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) Program to increase rental assistance to low-income families and veterans.
    Funding for Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), the Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) and the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Grants program.
    Full funding and protection of programs like the National Housing Trust Fund, Section 515 Rural Rental Housing Program, Low Income Housing Tax Credit and the HOME block grant to increase the stock of affordable housing.


Read the full Policy Agenda