Bolstering Charitable Deduction Would Help Reconnect Lonely Americans

Fox Business’ opinion section recently featured a piece from DonorsTrust’s Carolyn Bolton encouraging lawmakers to strengthen the $300 charitable tax deduction, enacted in 2020 as part of the COVID-19 relief package. As she lays out in the piece, bolstering this tax deduction offers a pathway for reconnecting lonely and beleaguered Americans with their communities.

The recommended improvements to the deduction include making the deduction permanent (it’s only temporary); enhancing the tax deduction; and making a taxpayer’s charitable contributions to a donor-advised fund eligible for the $300 charitable tax deduction.

As Carolyn explains in the op-ed:

“This deduction is particularly important for single-person households, as it would serve as a way to help them plug into and hasten the milestones typical of the American dream. Costs are rising, and the single, low- to middle-income earner is too often overlooked in society.

Regardless of their financial circumstances, Americans could contribute with confidence knowing they have charitable cash to spend vis-à-vis a charitable tax deduction. What’s more, religious institutions would be encouraged to earn and maintain the trust of younger members.

Not only would this help resolve Americans’ loneliness problem, it also creates a more diverse and representative philanthropic community and gives people something to live for apart from the daily routine of making rent from one paycheck to the next.”

All Americans, regardless of how they file their taxes, should have access to tax-advantaged financial tools that help a person grow his or her charitable impact. What’s more, all Americans deserve a charitable bucket, especially one that helps connect them to their community.

As our CEO recently said during an episode of our Giving Ventures podcast, big-dollar philanthropy is crowding out more modest givers, many of whom have keen insights into the specific, rehabilitative needs of their community. It’s crucial they, too, have a charitable voice.

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