At the beginning of 2021, the United States was in the midst of a halting economic recovery, with elevated unemployment rates, slowing job growth, and very few Americans vaccinated against COVID-19. Forecasters predicted a slow recovery, with major measures of the labor market not recovering their pre-pandemic levels for several years. But in March 2021, Congress passed and President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). The rescue act policies are a central reason that the U.S. economy has recovered at a historic pace, with the strongest growth in decades and workers gaining not only a record number of jobs but also more power to demand higher wages. The rescue act changed the trajectory of the U.S. economy by providing direct economic relief to help families struggling with economic disruptions amid the pandemic. As a result, the American economy is confronting challenges such as the war in Ukraine and global inflation from a position of strength, with a strong labor market and relatively healthy household finances.
Please join the Center for American Progress for a discussion that will focus on the current health of the U.S. economy, how the rescue plan and other policies have contributed to the recovery, and what policies are needed going forward to ensure an economy that works for all Americans.
Dr. Cecilia Rouse, Chair, White House Council of Economic Advisers
Gene Sperling, White House American Rescue Plan Coordinator
Patrick Gaspard, President and CEO, Center for American Progress