By Anna Gross

A brief guide to President Biden’s Build Back Better plan and why it is so important. 

If you’ve listened to the news over the past few weeks, you’ve probably heard of President Biden’s Build Back Better (BBB) act that he is trying to pass through the Senate. The President’s bill is packed with legislation that he argues will promote a better future for all Americans, not just the wealthiest among us. Although its critics claim the BBB is extremely expensive, its supporters believe the costs to be worth it as it will invest in children, provide health coverage for all Americans, and more. 

One of the biggest selling points of President Biden’s bill is the Child Tax Credit. According to WhiteHouse.gov, most families are already receiving $250-$300 per child every month. But if they qualify for the Child Tax Credit, parents and guardians will start receiving $3000-$3500 per child a month. The Child Tax Credit is not a new idea. It was first passed in 1997 by President Ford and later expanded by President Reagan. Since it was passed in March of 2021, the newest version of this bill has been known to decrease hunger amongst children by 30%. Passing the BBB will also give children two years of high-quality preschool. According to WhiteHouse.gov, every dollar spent on childhood care and education produces three to seven dollars in the future. Children who do better in school are more likely to graduate high school and college, leading to higher earnings as adults. 

Universal healthcare is another part of the bill that has been discussed heavily for years. The BBB is estimated to provide healthcare options for 3 million people who aren’t insured. The new bill, if passed, aims to improve home care services for the elderly and those with disabilities. Those who are hired to work in homes will be paid more, hopefully resulting in greater care. Providing healthcare keeps lower income families from having to pay huge medical bills out of pocket which can create a healthier society we can all benefit from.

Along with the benefits of the Build Back Better Act previously discussed, the bill also includes money for affordable housing, job training programs, and college grants with an increase in funding for HBCUs and tribal colleges. It’s original plan was even more ambitious, providing two free years of community college, paid family leave, and lowering the costs of prescription drugs. These items were taken out to make the bill because of bipartisan negotiations. Our nation spends $731 billion on defense per year which adds up to 3.41% of our annual GDP. In perspective, Build Back Better amounts to $1 percent of our GDP. From my perspective, BBB is an investment worth making.

About Anna Gross

Anna Gross is a Sophomore in the Pre-IB program at Richwoods High School. She is involved in Student Council, Student Leadership Team, speech, tennis, and Spanish Club. Outside of school she loves to travel, bake, and perform as a singer, dancer, and actress!

About Terri Silva

Terri Silva is a 20-year-old sophomore at Bradley University pursuing a major in Television Arts with a minor in Interdisciplinary Film Studies. For Silva, art is a hobby in addition to a potential career, and she takes it very seriously. Silva thrives when she tells stories in all forms: drawings, films, writings, and more. Silva thinks of herself as a creative mind that wants to share ideas with others, while also taking in what they have to offer as well.

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