HARD-hit Americans could be set to receive cash every month under calls for stimulus checks to become permanent.
Billions of pounds worth of payments have been made to individuals and families in the form of three stimulus checks over the course of the pandemic – but there are demands for more.
Both politicians and economists believe recurring payments would ensure economic recovery and even just one more direct payment could lift 6.6million Americans out of poverty, according to a study by the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center.
A group of more than 125 economists wrote an open letter calling for ongoing direct cash payments, citing them as "one of the quickest, most effective ways to get families and economy back on track".
It read: "Recurring direct payments will help families meet basic needs, boost state and local economies, and speed the recovery, and should be paired with other valuable programs like unemployment benefits, aid to state and local governments, stronger SNAP benefits, robust child care funding and more.
"The Covid crisis has caused some of the most significant and unequal damage to the US economy in modern history, leaving families and businesses alike struggling to get by.
"Unless policymakers act quickly to respond to the crisis at the scale necessary, we risk the damage to the economy lasting much longer than necessary, particularly for those at the bottom who have been hit the hardest."
The group has called for the next stimulus to be "big, immediate and direct".
Meanwhile, Democrats are also backing calls for more cash to be handed to those most in need.
About 20 Democratic US senators, including Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden of Oregon and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, sent Joe Biden a letter calling on him toinclude recurring relief payments in his Build Back Better infrastructure package.
The senators wrote: "Families shouldn’t have to worry about whether they’ll have enough money to pay for essentials in the months ahead as the country continues to fight a global pandemic.”
It comes as struggling families could be helped out with two new "stimulus checks" this year – if bills being crafted by Biden are approved.
The first package, named the Americans Jobs Plan, would see more than $2trillion pumped into the US economy with jobs created – if approved.
Meanwhile, a second project – called the American Families Plan – could potentially see $1trillion put aside for both families and individuals, reports the Washington Post.
There are several ways in which this plan could benefits hard-hit Americans.
It may see the temporary expansion of child tax credit continued until 2025, two years free tuition at community college for both adults and high school graduates, costless kindergarten for three and four years olds, and up to 12 weeks of paid medical and family leave.
It could also allow for more affordable childcare through either tax credits or subsidies for costs.
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