The American Rescue Plan and bipartisan emergency measures played a significant role in lowering the poverty rate in 2021, successfully alleviating hardship during an unprecedented national crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Recent analysis by the Urban Institute found that these bills, combined with existing benefit programs, reduced the projected poverty rate in 2021 by two-thirds and kept an estimated 50 million Americans out of poverty.
The Urban Institute estimated that without income support programs such as direct payments, the expanded Child Tax Credit, expanded unemployment insurance benefits and emergency SNAP benefits, its projected Supplemental Poverty Measure for 2021 would have soared to 23.1% – putting nearly a quarter of Americans below the poverty threshold. However, benefit programs, the American Rescue Plan and bipartisan emergency response measures cut that number to 7.7%.
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