What Are Some Programs to Lessen Poverty?


Quick Answer

Four main pieces of legislation designed to fight poverty in the United States include the Social Security Amendments of 1964, the Food Stamp Act of 1964, The Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, and the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. These pieces of legislation make up The War on Poverty.

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Full Answer

The War on Poverty was first introduced by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964. These pieces of legislation introduced a variety of programs designed to both lift people out of poverty and to prevent people from falling into poverty in the future.

The Food Stamp program, Volunteers in Service to America, Job Corps and Community Action Agencies, which were all created during The War on Poverty, are designed to aid those already in impoverished situations by meeting otherwise unmet needs. The Social Security program was designed to prevent people from falling into poverty once they reach an age at which they are no longer able to work. Its expansion in 1964 created Medicare and Medicaid, which serves to prevent medical costs from driving people into poverty.

Since their creation, these programs have been amended several times. Additionally, several have been added to their ranks, including AmeriCorps, Head Start and Title 1 legislation. The two largest programs designed to fight poverty as of 2015 are the Social Security Administration and the Earned Income Tax Credit.

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