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Sharon Parrott
Parrott re-joined the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities in November 2012 after serving as Secretary Sebelius’ Counselor for Human Services Policy at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) from August 2009 until November 2012. She is the Vice President for Budget Policy and Economic Opportunity and focuses on the impact of budget and tax policy on the nation’s efforts to reduce poverty and hardship and promote economic opportunity.

At HHS, Parrott was a lead advisor on human services issues, including programs for low-income families and children, children who have been maltreated or are at risk of abuse, seniors and people with disabilities. Her work included a broad range of efforts, including early education, TANF, child support enforcement, child welfare, teen pregnancy prevention, community living services and supports for seniors and people with disabilities, and the intersection of health reform and human services issues.

Parrott previously worked at the Center from 1993 through August 2009. Parrott was the Director of the Welfare Reform and Income Support Division and routinely provided technical assistance to federal policymakers, state agency officials, and state-level policy organizations on a range of issues related to welfare reform and the interaction and integration of benefit program rules in Medicaid, Food Stamps, TANF, Child Care, and SCHIP.

Parrott also played a key role in the Center’s work on the federal budget, the impact of federal budget decisions on low-income populations, low-income tax policy, and policies that ensure that solutions to climate change do not adversely impact low-income households.

Parrott has been quoted in such publications as the New York Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Atlantic Monthly, Wall Street Journal, and the Associated Press and has appeared on broadcasts including The Newshour with Jim Lehrer.

In 1999 and 2000, Parrott was detailed to the District of Columbia's Department of Human Services where she served as a Senior Policy Advisor on TANF, Food Stamp and Medicaid issues.

She received both her B.A. in Economics and Masters Degree in Social Work with a social policy emphasis from the University of Michigan.

Entries by Sharon Parrott

Rubio Block-Grant Proposal Would Weaken Safety Net, Not Strengthen It

(0) Comments | Posted January 9, 2014 | 4:20 PM

Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) spoke eloquently yesterday about the aspirations of people living in poverty, but his proposals would represent a significant step backward in efforts to reduce poverty -- weakening the safety net for low-income children, seniors, and people with disabilities and almost certainly increasing child poverty.


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War on Poverty: Large Positive Impact, But More Work Remains

(2) Comments | Posted January 7, 2014 | 12:56 PM

President Reagan famously declared, and others have often repeated, that the United States fought a war on poverty and poverty won.  But, as we mark the 50th anniversary of President Johnson’s War on Poverty, we should recognize that poverty has fallen significantly over the last half-century, and other troubling poverty-related...

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Why the Shutdown Needs to End

(2) Comments | Posted October 11, 2013 | 10:22 AM

House Republicans unveiled a plan yesterday to raise (or suspend) the debt ceiling for six weeks but leave the government shutdown in place, raising the specter that the shutdown could continue for weeks -- maybe all the way until November 22, the GOP's proposed new debt limit deadline.  There is...

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Budgeting by Headlines Isn't the Way to Run the Government

(0) Comments | Posted October 4, 2013 | 2:33 PM

The House leadership's piecemeal approach to temporarily fund politically sensitive programs -- the third installment of which will take place in the House today -- is no way to govern.  It's a fig leaf, leaving large swaths of the federal government closed as the government shutdown reaches day four today. ...

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Census: SNAP Lifted 4 Million People Out of Poverty in 2012 and Reduced Hardship for Millions More

(0) Comments | Posted September 17, 2013 | 11:04 AM

SNAP (the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps) lifted 4 million people above the official poverty line in 2012, according to new data that the Census Bureau released today.  That's the highest level on record (see chart).  (Census doesn't adjust its data for population growth, but...

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Congress Addresses Flight Delays But Leaves Other Sequestration Problems Unsolved

(2) Comments | Posted April 26, 2013 | 2:23 PM

Responding to highly publicized flight delays from the "sequestration" budget cuts, the House and Senate have voted overwhelmingly to allow the Transportation Department to shift some airport infrastructure funding to pay air traffic controllers.  To be sure, delays in air travel inconvenience travelers and harm the economy.  But many other...

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Boehner Cuts in Non-Defense Discretionary Programs Likely as Big as Automatic "Sequestration" Cuts

(0) Comments | Posted December 12, 2012 | 12:47 PM

The tax and Medicare components of the deficit-reduction proposal that Speaker John Boehner offered last week received lots of attention, but the proposal's $300 billion cut in discretionary programs over the next ten years attracted relatively little notice.  That reduction, however, would likely result in cuts to non-defense discretionary...

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