Rockefeller Foundation to Invest $65M in Low-Wage Workers

On February 25, the Rockefeller Foundation announced a new campaign aimed at lifting marginalized communities out of poverty. To achieve this objective, the Foundation is investing $65 million into programs that will help 10 million U.S. workers and their families meet their basic needs.

“Far too many people work hard and play by the rules, but the American Dream feels more out of reach than ever before—and for many marginalized communities, it was hardly accessible to begin with,” said Rockefeller Foundation President Rajiv Shah. “Over our 106-year history, The Rockefeller Foundation has stepped up during our country’s most critical moments. To meet the moment today and going forward, we have to fight on every front to expand opportunity for America’s working families.”

According to the Foundation, more than 44 million working households in the U.S. struggle to pay their bills each month. As part of its investment strategy, the Foundation is launching the U.S. Equity and Economic Opportunity Initiative, which will focus on expanding and modernizing economic policies like the Child Tax Credit (CTC) and the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), two of the most effective tools for lifting families out of poverty.

The Initiative will also focus on encouraging public-private partnerships to invest in “Opportunity Zones” as part of a new tax policy designed to spur economic growth in distressed communities. Efforts are currently underway in the following areas: Atlanta, GA, Boston, MA, Dallas, TX, Louisville, KY, Miami, FL, Newark, NJ, New Orleans, LA, Norfolk, VA, Pittsburgh, PA, Oakland, CA., Seattle, WA, St. Louis, MO, and Washington D.C.

“There is no investment in America that gets a better ROI than investment in an equitable future for America’s workers,” said Otis Rolley, managing director and acting senior vice president of the Rockefeller Foundation’s U.S. Equity and Economic Opportunity Initiative. “Our team hit the ground running and are already supporting proven economic policies and promoting grassroots partnerships to spur greater investment in low-wage workers and low-income communities all across the country.”