We Find Ourselves at a Crossroads
”Like it or not we live in interesting times. They are times of danger and uncertainty; but they are also more open to the creative energy of men than any other time in history.” –Robert F. Kennedy, University of Cape Town, South Africa N.U.S.A.S. "Day of Affirmation" Speech June 6th, 1966.
Fifty years ago, Robert F. Kennedy encouraged South African college students to boldly embrace economic inclusion and justice. South Africa, like the United States, was at a crossroads.
Today, we find ourselves, again at a crossroads.
This presidential election was about change. Change in leadership, change in the way we do things. Marylanders wanted economic change that they could see – in rural and urban communities – for their families and their neighbors. And Marylanders wanted to see real benefits in their communities, not just on television.
Families throughout Maryland struggle to keep up with their mortgages, to manage their debts, to pay for unexpected medical emergencies, to age in place, to save for the future and build enough wealth to improve their lives and the lives of their loved ones.
At MCRC, in 2016, we’ve met with and fought for individuals and families who’ve lost their retirement savings trying to keep their home out of tax-lien foreclosure; talked to veterans who, after serving their country, spent their GI Bill money on a for-profit school that left them with enormous debt, but without the skills to get a good job; provided older adults throughout the state resources and support to help them age in their communities with dignity.
Our work creates meaningful change in the lives of working families. In 2016, MCRC’s...
policy work benefited 205,000 Marylanders;
SOAR (Securing Older Adult Resources) events connected 600 older adults with education, resources, and financial assistance; and,
consumer education campaign for the Homeowners’ Tax Credit led at least 200 individuals to apply for the HOTC in Baltimore City, leading to at least $200,000 in tax credits for low-income homeowners.
In 2017, MCRC will need to be nimble to expand on our policy, education, and outreach work in Maryland while fending off attempts to roll back consumer protections at the federal level. To do both, we will be working to strengthen and expand the movement for economic justice. We will work to build broader, stronger, more inclusive coalitions throughout Maryland. We will focus on economic justice issues that benefit urban and rural consumers. We will be a voice for those left out of policy conversations and will work to make the table bigger so that emerging leaders across our state can represent themselves. We will continue our cutting-edge research to point out the disparate impact of for-profit schools, auto insurance, and housing policies on communities of color. We will train communities how to advocate for themselves at the federal and state level. We will work to ensure Maryland banks are providing real community support to communities in need.
To achieve this, we need your help. Our innovative research and effective advocacy is important now more than ever. That’s why we’ve set up a Rapid Response Fund that will provide us with the flexibility to act quickly to respond to new opportunities and challenges that will emerge this year.
I’m inviting you to contribute a tax-deductible gift of $50, $100, $250, $1000 or another amount to help us have the means to build a more just and inclusive economy-one that works for all-in Maryland.