100K families in Puerto Rico can still apply for federal Child Tax Credit
An estimated 100,000 Puerto Rican families are still eligible to request the Child Tax Credit (CTC), the reason why a trio of institutions has come together to run a public awareness effort on the island.
Espacios Abiertos, the Youth Development Institute and the Hispanic Federation, joined as the Alliance for Economic Security, announced the restart of the “ReclamaTuDineroPR” campaign to help families request and receive the money that they could access.
The Alliance developed several alternatives to assist families in the application process, ranging from in-person orientation, electronic websites, and a call center.
In the months of September and October, the Alliance, in collaboration with nine community-based organizations, will offer free orientation and help on CTC in 17 centers throughout Puerto Rico.
The centers are: the Boys and Girls Club in Arecibo and Mayaguez, Nuestra Escuela and Proyecto Matria in Caguas, Centro Sor Isolina Ferré in Guayama, Ponce, Barrio Obrero and Canóvanas, Proyecto P.E.C.E.S. in Humacao, the Centro de Alternativa Casa Ramón in Juncos, Nuestra Escuela in Loíza, and GUPE in Patillas.
Additionally, the Centro Alegría Early Head Start, Red por los Derechos de la Niñez, the Centro Amor Head Start, Red por los Derechos de la Niñez, the Centro Equidad Head Start, Red por los Derechos de la Niñez in Barrio Obrero, the Centro Esperanza Head Start, Red por los Derechos de la Niñez in Miramar and COSSAO in Utuado.
In the ReclamaTuDineroPR.com website, people will be able to obtain information, access the platforms and tools available to complete the CTC application, that Code for America developed for the Internal Revenue Service and has been available to applicants from Puerto Rico since July 2022.
Applicants may also identify the free help center closest to their community and make an appointment.
Likewise, people have the option of calling the United Way of Puerto Rico community service line, dialing 2-1-1 to receive guidance on how to apply for the CTC or what to do to know the stage of an application already started.
Studies published by Espacios Abiertos and the Youth Development Institute showed that the the Earned Income Tax Credit — which was also available to Puerto Rico — and the CTC represented more than $2.5 billion for the local economy.
This second phase of the awareness campaign focuses on the CTC, as some $863 million was already disbursed under the EITC, according to Puerto Rico Treasury Department data.
“After a successful campaign over the past few months, we have extended this initiative to help ensure that no eligible family is left out of receiving the Child Tax Credit 2021,” said Charlotte Gossett-Navarro, Principal Director of Hispanic Federation Puerto Rico.
“In this new phase, it is easier than ever to apply for the CTC from your cell phone through the new GetCTC platform,” said Gossett.
“But for people who need support, we have multiple trusted community organizations throughout the island, prepared to help families complete the processes for free,” said Gossett-Navarro.
Funding for the initiative comes from the Rockefeller Foundation, Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Philanthropies, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Open Society Foundations, Hispanic Federation, Economic Opportunity Funders, and Annie E Casey Foundation.
“We’re convinced that the CTC and EITC relief represents an important tool for many people to overcome the poverty line, but there’s still a lot of work to do to address the economic insecurity in which half of our population lives,” said Cecille Blondet, executive director of Espacios Abiertos.
“The resounding support we have from foundations in the United States is eloquent testimony to their confidence in the capacity of our organizations and their commitment to Puerto Rico and our people,” she said.
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