PolicyLink Publications →
REPORT - Breaking the Cycle: From Poverty to Financial Security for All
This paper explores and provides examples of how key changes to components of the financial, education, justice, health, and tax systems can strengthen—rather than undermine—households’ financial security, and increase economic inclusion. It describes innovative approaches that integrate a focus on building financial security across programs, while reforming the systems that most affect the balance sheets of lower-income families and families of color. The featured approaches run the gamut from small local programs to state and federal policy reforms and initiatives. These innovations and the changes that they represent to key systems may be adapted and expanded to strengthen the financial security of vulnerable people and communities nationwide.
REPORT - Integrating Family Financial Security into Promise Neighborhoods: A Resource and Implementation Guide
This guide aims to describe the programs, policies, and practices that set families on a path to financial security while achieving prescribed Promise Neighborhoods results. The tool is also intended to connect Promise Neighborhoods to potential partnerships across the asset-building field. Many of the practices lifted up in this guide are designed to mitigate the negative outcomes associated with lack of academic and family supports, as well as the compounded effects of concentrated poverty and financial instability in communities.
REPORT - Building an Equitable Tax Code: A Primer for Advocates
In theory, tax code–based public subsidies should help all families save and invest, but instead, wealthier households receive most of the benefits. In fact, a recent analysis of the largest wealth- building tax subsidies found that the top 1 percent of households received more benefits from these tax code–based subsidies than the bottom 80 percent combined. This brief answers key questions about tax expenditures: What are they, how do they work, and who benefits? In addition, since the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) does not collect tax data by race, the primer uses data related to the distribution of benefits by income quintiles and the demographics of each quintile to provide a rough approximation of how different racial and ethnic groups do or do not benefit from the different categories of tax expenditures.
REPORT - Building Financially Secure Futures: An Approach for Boys and Men of Color
National demographic trends indicate that people of color will soon become the majority. Yet historically, people of color have not been able to build generational wealth.This brief underscores the growing racial wealth gap in the context of a changing America. It examines the economic and financial challenges facing boys and men of color over the course of a lifetime and lifts up asset-building strategies that can be integrated with targeted services for this group. It also highlights successful practices that are already addressing financial challenges at a community level for this population, and draws from these practices to inform policy recommendations that can be implemented at state and local levels.
TOOL - Getting Equity Advocacy Results (GEAR)
GEAR draws from the wisdom and experience of seasoned advocates and action researchers to provide useful benchmarks, frameworks, and tools for measuring progress in equity efforts for policy change across a range of issues. Tracking the progress of equity advocacy is important, and it does not need to be complex or daunting, despite the inevitable twists and turns of policy campaigns. In fact, there are wins along the way to policymaking. GEAR is a tool to help you track those wins and support your efforts in policymaking.