New England Consortium

The New England Consortium is a six-state collaborative of child research and policy organizations, which have developed a common set of priorities to reduce child and family poverty in our individual states and region, and act as a catalyst for national change at this time of increasing poverty.

The Consortium's mission is to reduce poverty for children and their families, through advocacy on a set of strategic state and federal priorities, with effective implementation across the region.

New England Consortium (NEC) members have chosen to focus on poverty reduction because research shows that poverty is the most determining life circumstance for children and affects every other indicator of child well being. Even in the wealthier New England states, such as Connecticut and Massachusetts, poverty has persisted at constant levels for decades, and increased in recent years, which demonstrates a strong need to invest new energy and renewed effort.

Some New England cities, including Hartford, Providence, and Springfield, have urban poverty rates that are among the highest in the nation. Rural areas in the three northern New England states have a disproportionate number of people living in poverty. The need to invest at this time is supported by the recent Brookings Institution projections, which indicate a steady increase in child poverty rates, unless purposeful action is taken to reverse these trends.

The Consortium's immediate focus will be on passage of federal health care reform and the extension of provisions in the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) related to child and family poverty. The Consortium looks forward to working with other advocates in the region, as well as with national partners who share the goal of ending child and family poverty.

For more on the New England Consortium, or for resources related to our policy agenda, please visit