The pandemic is affecting our lives in profound and unexpected ways. As completely unexpected as this pandemic is, we are not surprised at all at how we are all pulling together and adjusting so that we can continue to help, protect, and support the people we serve.
Read the latest MASSCAP news including network and agency news, policy and program updates, and opinion and advocacy pieces.
Thousands of Households To Be Helped Immediately
On behalf of thousands of vulnerable households struggling with their energy burden across the Commonwealth, we thank Chairman Michlewitz and the House Ways and Means Committee for drafting a supplemental budget that includes $15M for Fuel Assistance.
Thousands of Households Have Run Out of Home Heating Oil
Advocates Call for Formal Federal/State Partnership
In response to a second consecutive reduction in federal fuel assistance resources legislators in the Senate led by Senators Hinds and Tarr, and in the House, led by Representatives Mark and Wong, joined last week by more than half of their colleagues, urged budget writers in both chambers to include $15 million for fuel assistance in the FY20 Supplemental Budget.
A Partnership with The Health Foundation of Central Massachusetts
During MASSCAP’s annual public policy briefing earlier this week at the State House, READYGO, a new early education and care workforce development initiative made possible through The Health Foundation of Central Massachusetts (THFCM), was announced.
As Reported by Chris Lisinski, State House News:
Additional $15M In New State Heating Aid Sought
Thousands of Massachusetts families risk running out of heating oil this winter without additional assistance from the state, an advocate warned Wednesday as lawmakers began pushing for new funding to augment federal aid.
Earned Income Tax Awareness Day · Celebrating 50 years of VITA
Today the Massachusetts Association for Community Action (MASSCAP) along with the Cambridge Economic Opportunity Committee (CEOC) and the Community Action Agency of Somerville (CAAS) were joined by Senator Sal DiDomenico, Representative Marjorie Decker, Cambridge Mayor Sumbul Siddiqui, Somerville Mayor Joseph Curtatone, and the Deputy Treasurer Alayna Van Tassel among others in kicking off this year’s tax season by launching the annual Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program (VITA) and celebrating 50 years of this critical program as well as recognizing the importance of accessing the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).
A Focus on Fuel Assistance and Weatherization
MASSCAP, along with LEO Inc., the network of Community Action Agencies in Massachusetts and the Massachusetts Energy Directors Association (MEDA), will launch its annual statewide awareness campaign to ensure that vulnerable Massachusetts families are able to keep safe, warm and healthy this winter.
Effective programs that help families to make ends meet, like the Earned Income Tax Credit, SNAP, fuel assistance, school lunches, Head Start, and Social Security cut the number of people in Massachusetts living in poverty by almost half and reduce the number of children living in poverty by more than half, according to a new report on poverty called “Obstacles on the Road to Opportunity: Finding a Way Forward Together.” The report was commissioned by the Massachusetts Association for Community Action (MASSCAP) and written by Nancy Wagman, Kids Count Director of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center (MassBudget).
MASSCAP Calls for Its Reversal
Is it possible to succeed as a legal immigrant if you are faced with a regulation designed to cause you to fail?
One Holyoke family is now finally able to make the down payment on their first home. This family with 2 young children and 2 working parents who have been saving for some time left the Valley Opportunity Council (VOC) Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site smiling.