Establishing Countywide Outreach Strategies to Alleviate Poverty

The federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) can be an effective tool to help fight poverty. Yet many people have not heard about it, don’t know how it works, or if they’re eligible. In Los Angeles County, which has one of the highest urban poverty rates in the nation, the Department of Business and Consumer Affairs is laying the groundwork for an unprecedented effort to increase use of the EITC.

The County of Los Angeles is partnering with FUSE executive fellow Nicole Richardson to develop a protocol for sharing data among relevant county agencies and social service providers in order to optimize outreach about the EITC to eligible people. Nicole is also helping formulate a plan that builds awareness of the tax credit into the day-to-day operations of government agencies, community groups, and nonprofits. The result will be the largest regional effort to promote the use of the EITC and a model that could potentially inform other large cities seeking to reduce poverty.