FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CDF Statement on the Inflation Reduction Act
Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) applauds the Senate for passing the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, as it will provide some needed relief for children, youth, and families across the country. The historic investment in clean energy is a pledge to our children’s future. Reducing prescription costs and assisting families with health care premiums will help ensure parents do not have to choose between their health and supporting their families. Additionally, the billions generated from a new minimum tax on large corporations could one day go toward economic and social benefits for children, youth, and families. This is what this country needs, and we urge the House to move swiftly to get this significant legislation to the president’s desk for signature, so children and families can feel some relief as the cost of food, gas, and other essentials continue to rise.
We also recognize that the Senate missed an opportunity to go even further and address the long-standing needs of children and families. CDF pushed Congressional leadership to include a provision that would have closed the Medicaid coverage gap by increasing eligibility in the 12 states that have refused federal funds to expand health care coverage. Unfortunately, the bill failed to close this gap, which unjustly denies health coverage to more than 2 million people—primarily Black and Brown individuals and families who live in the South.
The Inflation Reduction Act also leaves out critical investments in funding for childcare, equitable access to nutrition, stable housing, and the Child Tax Credit (CTC). Last year, the expanded CTC provided monthly cash payments that reached 65 million children and kept 3.7 million children out of poverty. Unfortunately, the Senate has allowed the program to expire.
These missed opportunities by Congress to step up for children and families are not minor policy details; they are major oversights that have both immediate and long-lasting impacts on the young people and their families who have been left out of this legislation. We hope this Congress will build on the success of the Inflation Reduction Act and get to work on additional legislation that meets the needs of children and their families across the country.