Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. September 2019. The U.S. Census Bureau released new data on the state of poverty in the country, showing that the official poverty rate fell for the fourth consecutive year in 2018. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities highlighted the role of safety net programs in reducing poverty, noting that the Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit alone lifted 7.9 million Americans out of poverty in 2018. The Center urged Congress to protect and improve these programs to continue to reduce the official poverty rate.