Over $220M in investments, new programs launched to lift Michigan families out of poverty
Michigan Poverty Task Force celebrates movement on recommendations to help put more Michiganders on a path to success in 2021
December 14, 2021
Media Contact: Ebony Stith, 517-285-4549
With nearly four million households struggling to make ends meet in Michigan, the Michigan Poverty Task Force celebrates movement on recommendations and over $220M in additional resources coming together to lift Michigan families out of poverty.
“The Michigan Poverty Task Force has helped us put Michiganders first by leading with data and experts to make recommendations on policy issues that make a real difference in people’s lives,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “I am grateful to the task force for working together across state government to help us deliver $220 million in investments and critical programs to help more kids get access to preschool, ensure families can keep the heat on in the winter, expand childcare programs, and so much more. I look forward to further collaboration as we continue finding ways to make bold investments in our people.”
“The Michigan Poverty Task Force made significant progress this year helping low-income Michigan families escape poverty,” said Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II. “Governor Whitmer and I were proud to work with the legislature to pass a state budget that puts Michiganders first and implements policies based on key recommendations from the Task Force. Our investments to expand the Great Start Readiness Program, help low-income families pay water bills, and boost access to childcare will help low-income families escape devastating cycles of poverty. Governor Whitmer and I are grateful for the partnership of the Task Force and its continued work to make a difference in the lives of low-income Michiganders.”
In February 2021, the Task Force presented 35 recommendations to create an anti-poverty agenda to support struggling families in Michigan. The recommendations focused on short, medium and long-term strategies that included expansion of existing, effective anti-poverty policies and bold new initiatives to help low-income Michiganders navigate and transcend poverty.
“Michigan Poverty Task Force has made significant progress in accomplishing our recommendations to ensure every Michigander has access to economic opportunity and prosperity,” said Kim Trent, Deputy Director of Prosperity, Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO). “This team has been focused on the key issues that will have the most impact on struggling families, and working hard together to move the recommendations and Michiganders forward.”
Significant investments for Michigan families were included in Gov. Whitmer’s FY22 budget based on Task Force recommendations:
- Investing $168M to Expand the Great Start Readiness Program: Gov. Whitmer signed a historic school aid budget increasing the early education program with an investment of roughly $168M into the Great Start Readiness program. The program helps four-year-old children at risk of school failure to reach a statewide target enrollment rate of 90% when combined with the children served by the federally funded Head Start Program.
- Investing $47M to Establish a LIHEAP Program for Water: Energy assistance for Michiganders struggling to pay their water bills and have faced losing this vital resource that focuses …….