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Task Force on Poverty, Opportunity, and Upward Mobility Releases Mission Statement

February 24, 2016

WASHINGTON. D.C. – In advance of their first idea forum today, the chairs of the Task Force on Poverty, Opportunity, and Upward Mobility released their mission statement. This mission statement, laying out the goals of the task force, marks the next step in the development of a bold, pro-growth agenda that Republicans will present to the country in the coming months.

Republican leaders launched the development of this agenda in January, announcing that it will address five issue areas: national security; jobs and the economy; health care; poverty, opportunity, and upward mobility; and restoring constitutional authority. Taking a bottom-up approach, committee-led task forces will develop this agenda, holding idea forums to take input and ideas from all members.

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Mission Statement: Task Force on Poverty, Opportunity, & Upward Mobility
Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway (R-TX)
Budget Committee Chairman Tom Price (R-GA)
Education and the Workforce Committee Chairman John Kline (R-MN)
Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX)
Ways & Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX)

Vision: Strengthen America’s social safety net to better help those in need; improve education and training so more can succeed in today’s economy; help welfare recipients enter, reenter, and remain in the workforce; and empower everyone to live their own American Dream. 


  1. Reduce poverty by helping people move from welfare to work;
  2. Promote opportunity for every American to get ahead and stay ahead by removing government-imposed barriers to success;
  3. Increase knowledge and skills of workers and job-seekers, so they are equipped to compete and succeed in a rapidly changing economy;
  4. Support and protect healthy families and a vibrant civil society;
  5. Secure and strengthen social safety net programs by making them financially healthy and sustainable;
  6. Better prepare America’s youth to be successful in school and the workplace; and Fight fraud that comes at the expense of the needy.

Policy Reforms

  1. Ensure states, non-profits, employers, welfare recipients, and taxpayers all benefit when someone moves from welfare to work;
  2. Increase flexibility to state and local governments to promote new ways to help those in need and foster seamless cooperation across assistance programs;
  3. Expect able-bodied adults receiving welfare to work or to prepare for work in exchange for receiving benefits;
  4. Increase long-term personal income security through improved retirement savings and access to affordable financial services;
  5. Remove government-imposed barriers to success;
  6. Make programs accountable by focusing on results, not inputs;
  7. Reform job training support, career and technical education, and higher education so workers and job-seekers have the skills and the education they need to succeed;
  8. Strengthen early childhood education and care by improving coordination between existing federal and state efforts and empowering families with a variety of choices; and
  9. Deliver the efficiency and effectiveness hardworking taxpayers deserve by attacking waste, fraud, and abuse.