A NEW SAFETY NET FOR WORKING FAMILIES:
ASSETS FOR ECONOMIC SECURITY
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
9:00–10:30 a.m. ET / 8:00-9:30 a.m. CT
To sign up for the audio webcast visit http://www.visualwebcaster.com/event.asp?id=54377.
- Greg Acs, principal research associate, Income and Benefits Policy Center, Urban Institute
- Leonard Burman, senior fellow, Urban Institute, and director, Tax Policy Center (moderator)
- Caroline Ratcliffe, senior research associate, Center on Labor, Human Services, and Population, Urban Institute
- John Weicher, director, Center for Housing and Financial Markets, Hudson Institute, and former assistant secretary, federal housing commissioner, and chief economist, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
- Andrew Yarrow, vice president and Washington director, Public Agenda, and author, Forgive Us Our Debts: The Intergenerational Dangers of Fiscal Irresponsibility.
Asset building and saving are essential components of a strategy for promoting economic advancement and security. While public policy has focused on increasing income for low-income working families, far less has been done to encourage them to save. For example, just 3 percent of the more than $400 billion in annual federal tax breaks subsidizing assets (such as the mortgage interest deduction) benefit the lowest-income 60 percent of households. In today’s uncertain economy, putting something aside for the future is more important than ever.
Be part of the conversation as experts discuss and debate proposals aimed at improving low-income families’ opportunities to save and invest. These include tax subsidies that increase disposable income for working families and policies directly aimed at helping families reduce debt and increase savings.
To further new thinking on protecting vulnerable households and helping them thrive, the Urban Institute published “A New Safety Net for Low-Income Families” (available at http://www.urban.org/projects/newsafetynet). Two of its papers — “Making Work Pay Enough: A Decent Standard of Living for Working Families” and “Enabling Families to Weather Emergencies and Develop: The Role of Assets” — will be the focus of this forum.
Note: Speaker bios and resource materials will be posted at http://www.urban.org/events/other/SafetyNet-Assets.cfm by January 12. Audio files of the event will be posted on the same page soon after January 13.