Responding to Rising Inequality: Policies Interventions That Ensure Opportunity for All

Source: Justin Steil, Stephen Menendian, University of California, Berkeley – Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society, Policy Brief, September 2014

The rise in inequality and its effects on economic mobility are defining issues for America’s future.

Key Findings:
∙ Extreme concentrations of income and wealth pose fundamental challenges to America’s ideals of democracy and equal opportunity.
∙ Both inequality and economic mobility vary substantially by metropolitan region within the U.S
∙ Variation in inequality and mobility imply that local, state, and federal policies can have an impact

A PLAN TO RESPOND: Policy interventions can address poverty and inequality
∙ Raise the minimum wage to lift nearly one million people out of poverty.
∙ Invest in early-childhood education, which is proven to have significant beneficial effects on long-term educational attainment and earnings.
∙ Enhance the Earned Income Tax Credit to raise the incomes of working poor families.
∙ Support economic and racial integration in neighborhoods and schools.
∙ Ensure that mortgages remain broadly accessible, especially for communities of color that have experienced historical discrimination in lending.
∙ Adjust capital gains tax rates so that they are commensurate with income tax rates.
∙ Shift savings incentives from tax deductions that disproportionately benefit the wealthy into refundable tax credits that provide more equal benefits across income categories.

Related:
The Path to a Fair and Inclusive Society: Policies that Address Rising Inequality
Source: Webcast, September 10, 2014

 six policy recommendations that can reduce economic and wealth inequality.