NASW Urges U.S. Senators to Enact Robust Build Back Better Legislation

As the U.S. Senate is poised to consider President Biden’s Build Back Better agenda, the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) urges all Senators to “get to yes” and pass a robust, equitable and sustainable budget reconciliation package that will advance social well-being, promote health, and create an inclusive economy.

The east side of the US Capitol in the early morning. Senate Chamber in foreground.

The east side of the US Capitol in the early morning. Senate Chamber in foreground.

The final legislation should be as comprehensive as possible and at a minimum:

  • Extend the expansion of the Child Tax Credit in the American Rescue Plan, which is estimated to reduce child poverty by 40 percent.
  • Invest in Housing Choice Vouchers.
  • Close the Medicaid coverage gap and permanently increase premium tax credits to make marketplace coverage more affordable and help more uninsured people to enroll.
  • Expand access to long-term care services under Medicaid.
  • Lower health care costs for Medicare beneficiaries and add dental, vision and hearing coverage.
  • Include provisions to reform Unemployment Insurance and update and expand Supplemental Security Income
  • Create a progressive paid family and medical leave program, addressing a major gap in the nation’s caregiving infrastructure.
  • Guarantee access to voluntary, free preschool programs for all 3- and 4-year-olds in participating states and make childcare affordable for parents with children up to age 5.
  • Make higher education more affordable across a range of institutions by increasing the maximum Pell Grant, eliminating community college tuition and fees in participating states, and supporting institutions dedicated to serving Black, Hispanic, and American Indian students.
  • Provide clean energy tax credits, incentives and investments.

We are at a historic time in our country to advance investments in human infrastructure to protect vulnerable Americans.  We urge every Senator to stand up, find common ground, and support this vital legislation.

Resource:

NASW 2021 Blueprint of Federal Social Policy Priorities