FORT MITCHELL, Ky. (April 21, 2023) – Are you interested using your voice to build a community where all families can thrive? Join United Way's advocacy network today.
Here are recent examples of our work:
United Way of Greater Cincinnati kicked off 2023 by hosting both new and returning members of Northern Kentucky's legislative delegation for a policy breakfast. Members were briefed on UWGC's systems-change approach and our 2023 advocacy agenda, which is based on UWGC's six priority impact areas: Ready Kids/Resilient Families; NextGen Success; Equitable Economic Mobility; Improved Prevention, Stronger Communities; Housing First; Responding to Community Need, along with Civic and Community Engagement.
In February, UWGC joined other Kentucky United Ways for the 10th annual Live United Day at the Kentucky State Capitol in Frankfort. UWGC volunteers and staff met with Northern Kentucky legislators to promote policies that would advance the well-being of all Kentuckians in the areas of health, financial mobility and educational access. Our advocates' agenda included policy proposals to promote economic mobility by addressing benefit cliffs, making postsecondary education more affordable, and ensuring families can access high-quality, affordable child care.
By the time this year's short legislative session wrapped up at the end of March, a joint resolution and two bills passed with UWGC's support:
HJR 39, a joint resolution to help Kentucky families avoid the benefits cliff, which is when low-wage workers are offered a raise or a promotion and turn it down because they don't want to lose child care, health or nutrition benefits. The measure contained the recommendations of the Benefits Cliff Task Force, including having the Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) review Kentucky's public assistance programs, analyze costs of child care implementation, examine the use of federal funding, create a benefits cliff calculator, and implement an outreach and education campaign to raise awareness of the federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and free tax filing services.
Only about 80 percent of Kentucky families eligible for the EITC claim it each year, which leaves an estimated $200+ million with the federal government and out of the hands of the Kentucky workers who earned it. UWGC's Free Tax Prep volunteers provide free tax preparation assistance for low-and-moderate-income families and ensure that eligible families claim the EITC, which is a federal tax credit that supports and rewards workforce participation and can help public assistance recipients overcome benefits cliffs.
HB21, which allows people experiencing homelessness to get a driver's license or state ID at a reduced cost of $5.
HB 165, which supports Kentucky's innovative Employee Child Care Assistance Partnership.
Getting legislation passed is just the first step, and our policy team will work with the Cabinet and other community partners to ensure these policies are successfully implemented.
United Way of Greater Cincinnati (UWGC) influences improvements to policies and practices so all Greater Cincinnati families can thrive.
Learn more about our advocacy efforts, download our 2023 Advocacy Policy Agenda (.pdf) or join our advocate network at uwgc.org/advocacy.