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Washington, D.C. – In an effort to ensure that every child in America has an opportunity to be economically secure, U.S. Senators Bob Casey (D-PA), Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Chuck Schumer (D-NY) are introducing the Young American Savers Act. This legislation, a key policy proposal in Senator Casey’s Five Freedoms for America’s Children agenda, would establish children’s savings accounts, seeded annually with $500 in government contributions, for every child whose parent(s) or guardian earns under $100,000 per year.

“No child’s future should be limited because their parents are not wealthy. Every young person in America should have the opportunity to reach their potential and experience economic security,” said Senator Casey. “More than 15 percent of children in Pennsylvania grow up in poverty. This is unacceptable. The Young American Savers Act is a down payment on the future of the children of our country.”

“Many Americans don’t begin to save for the future until later in life, making it far more difficult to get an education, start a business, buy a home, or retire. If children are on solid financial footing at a young age, they are far more likely to build a middle-class life. By investing up to $9,000 in savings accounts for our children, we’ll be setting them up for success throughout their lives. Oregon has lead the nation in helping working people save, and we have the opportunity to build on that success,” said Senator Wyden.

“For too many Americans, the promise of the American Dream seems out of reach,” said Majority Leader Schumer. “The Young American Savers Act would invest in our nation’s youth and make it easier for future generations of children to escape poverty and obtain economic security. No one should be denied the opportunity to own a home or start a business because they don’t come from a wealthy family. This legislation would ensure that every child in America has much more ability to reach their full potential.”

Up to 50 percent of funds in the savings accounts established by the Young American Savers Act may be used for higher education expenses. Funds can also be rolled over into a retirement account, used to start a business or as a down payment to buy a home in the name of the account beneficiary.

Depending on years of eligibility, children could begin their adult lives with up to $9,000 in savings to help pay for post-secondary education, start a business, buy a home or save for long-term retirement. This legislation is a key part of Senator Casey’s Five Freedoms for America’s Children, a comprehensive set of policy proposals aimed at ensuring every child in America has the freedom to reach their full potential.

Read more about this proposal here.