How did they vote? Find out! here is the link – and you can read more ♥♥http://povertylaw.org/povertyscorecard2012/poverty-rate-map
How did they vote? Find out! here is the link – and you can read more ♥♥http://povertylaw.org/povertyscorecard2012/poverty-rate-map
Should Poverty come with “Perks”? #fb
@MENDPOVERTY posted a picture of the hot meal they served in the main Pacoima building yesterday. Someone commented that it that is how the poor are eating ; he would quit his job.
To be fair, the head of the food department Richard Weinroth used to own his own restaurant and his cooking is yummy. In turn he is teaching cooking to the volunteers in the department as well as bringing in school kids from the neighborhood and teaching them cooking as well. But let’s forget all of that and get down to emotions.
Let’s not be fair. Let’s talk about how you feel.
When you see someone on public cash assistance and you see them drinking a beer, or smoking a cigarette, or getting a tattoo, or drinking a Starbucks: are you mad? Do you feel that they are infringing on the rights that only people who are not on aid should have?
I get irate. I will be honest. I see parents bring their kids to my office wearing Burger King Crowns and wearing name brand clothing. When I ask if they had the clothes donated or where they bought them – I often hear that they shopped at pricey clothing stores in the mall that I don’t dare wander in to and paid a quarter of their cash aid for the month in clothes purchases.
Am I mad that poor people have nice things?
Am I frustrated that responsible economic choices are not being made?
I am never mad that someone has nice things. I am annoyed that as a population we have made a social contract to assist the poor in surviving poverty: they are given enough financial, medical and food assistance to keep poverty from being lethal and to give them room to pull themselves into a better fiscal situation – but it does not seem to be helping some people. The system is labeling them and crippling them with the Stigma of “Welfare Queens”, “Welfare Moms” and “Deadbeats” . This harms them so badly that people are not asking for help at all because they don’t want to be labeled as worthless.
Poverty is, after all an economic state and not a statement of personal worth.
I want people in poverty to thrive; in fact I count on it professionally. I want to see growth and education and employment and so see people rise from daily struggle to economic security.
I feel betrayed when I see someone pull out the EBT (Welfare checks come on a debit card these days) card and pay full price for anything. If you don’t use coupons with your Food Stamp Funds I want to kidnap you and make you watch episodes of Extreme Couponing with me. I believe a Smart Phone is a necessity for leaving poverty – but I don’t believe you need 2 iPads to go with it.
I have been so poor that you could not measure the desperation I felt when the DPSS office screwed me over and “forgot” to do an update and I had to wait days for food-stamps or the cash aid – meanwhile I had a 3-year-old who needed diapers and I was out of milk. And I worked and I went to school, and I found creepy crappy jobs that I hated and I worked them until I came to sit here in the GAIN office trying desperately not to screw up my cases for other people who are in the same economic spot I was.
Perhaps that is why I feel entitled to tell people on entitlements to make the money last and not think of it as free money. that money is a social contract and I think we can expect people who are receiving it to spend it in the spirit it is issued. It is a tool, not a toy.
No. I don’t ever want to see Purple P’s on the lapels of the poor to identify them as impoverished, and I don’t think they should eat gruel (porridge – oatmeal etc) and stale bread.
I want us to have a responsible system od balanced respect. We could be poor at any time : the poor are hopefully on their way out of that classification and their tax dollars will fund the hopes and change of others.
So, eat your fancy lunches, and then stick around to learn to grow the ingredients and cook it for yourself.
1 in 5:Ratio of California’s children living in poverty.
6.1 million: Total number of people living at or below the poverty line, as measured by the Census Bureau’s Supplemental Poverty Measures.
45%:The percentage of poor adults who grew up in poverty.
38.1%:The share of black children under the age of 6 living poverty.
22%:Rates of single mothers with children under the age of 18 in California. Single-parent households have become a growing demographic across the nation.
1 in 3:Ratio of African-Americans and Latinos being raised by a single mother.
7 million:The number of uninsured people in the state. Medical-out-of-pocket expenses are among the largest drivers of poverty under the Supplemental Poverty Measures.
300:School districts with at least 25 percent of children living in poverty.
37.9%:Lake County’s percentage of poor kids. It has the highest share among California’s 58 counties.
3.7%:Calaveras County’s share of impoverished youngsters, the lowest proportion in the state.
Facts by Rosa Ramirez| Reporter
Maybe I missed it when I was poor
What is the magical allure to not having money?
Why is staying home ( or in someone else’s home) a better idea than coming to my office or sticking to the plan that YOU chose?
I don’t get it.
Once a week I check the database to see who went to Job Club ( I swear I didn’t name it ) or who started school, who got a new job or who is making changes in their daily activities that will result in a change of income and life style and eventually leaving their financial dependence on the county. Every week I want to scream. All of the great plans we have made are tossed into the trash by people who could not even call to let me know they changed their minds or decided it wasn’t worth their time.
Once a person broke it down to me: They figured they were “being paid $3.25 an hour” and “that’s not even legal to pay less than minimum wage. That’s slave wages!”.
Ahem, I contend it is not any wage at all. It is “supplemental” funding to keep you alive until you can stay alive under your own power. That is money for toothpaste, deodorant, socks and basic necessities so you stay healthy and look presentable to be hired. There are SNAP or CalFresh, aka Food Stamp funds given to you to feed your family and keep them healthy. Although the Medi-CAL insurance you have is better health insurance than most of the world has, it isn’t super fantastic so maybe you want to dress warmly and eat right so you don’t need to use it.
Being poor is a misery. And being poor should suck. It should make you miserable. And you should have enough self-respect to want to do every legal thing you can to improve your life and the lives depending on you. No one is punishing you for being poor, but you are punishing yourself by perpetuating your situation.
Don’t blame me. I hold you accountable ( as a fully functioning adult who is being given funds for transportation, funds to pay for child care, funds to purchase nice clothing and help making a resume and a job search) for continuing your own financial status
Stop profiting by discriminating against single parent families on cash aid!
A two parent family who lives as a household on public aid is not expected to repay public assistance. . A two parent family who lives separately while one parent and the child(ren) receive public assistance will have to repay the entire assistance .
My daughter just turned 18 years old and is two weeks from graduating High School. For the past 12 years I have been her sole support except for $240 a month; a partial child support payment. There is a $10,000 balance on the child support case and my daughter and I will never see a dime of it. I was on cash aid for about 5 years and completed college against the advice of my DPSS social workers. For the last 12 years I have not been on cash aid but the County of Los Angeles is still collecting Child Support to pay for five (5) years of cash aid.( I actually work in the welfare system now) The County of Los Angeles has received over half of my child support order for 17 years. This $10,000 is past due child support never paid to me.
A two parent family who lives as a household on public aid is not expected to repay public assistance. . A two parent family who lives separately while one parent and the child(ren) receive public assistance will have to repay the entire assistance grant even though fewer dollars were given to this family than to the family living under one roof.
Joe and Sue live together, have a child together and together they request cash aid. They receive a cash aid payment for Joe, Sue and Baby . Cash aid ends and Joe eventually moves out. Joe and Sue enter into a Child Support agreement. Sue is able to collect the full amount of child support ordered.
Joe and Sue don’t live together when they have a baby and apply for cash aid. Sue receives cash aid for herself and Baby for three years when Sue completes her education and finds a self-sustaining job. The County of Los Angeles demands Sue give her child support rights to them and they take all but $50 of child support. After Sue leaves cash aid the county continues to take more than half of the child support. After the baby turns 18 the county continues to bill Joe for all the cash aid Sue and Baby received when he was not living with them. There is an additional 10% interest charge added to the debt the county believes is owed to them.
Why do we ask some parents to repay cash aid and not demand that all parents pay this back – or let none of them pay it? Is it double dipping to take tax payments out of paychecks and have the taxes go to social welfare programs and additionally garnish money to pay for the social welfare your child is using?
And, who monitors these accounts? The California Child Support system has been adding on 10% for years and I think the outstanding debt on the account is more than any cash aid award my family received. I was labeled a Welfare Mom, he was labeled a Dead Beat and the state of California and Los Angeles County are making a profit.
Ending Homeless-ness. It sounds like a noble cause, but mostly is just frustrating.
The reason people are in the streets is because there is nowhere else for them to go. Even though the numbers of vacant houses in the US outnumber the Homeless Families; there is nowhere that these families can legally turn. There are not enough emergency shelters or even dedicated floor space under a ceiling to direct people to when they need to escape the elements.
I often find myself in the ridiculous position of remembering that homelessness is a “First World Problem” – because back when this same bit of land would be a Third World country; Native Americans slept outside, under the stars, in caves and in tents. Surely a corner of someone’s garage or being crowded into a living room is better than that? I remind myself that Galileo did not have cable television or even electricity.
And yet, while there is enough low hanging fruit and food stamps to keep bellies full: I am looking at a population who is living a Third World life in a First World country. I see little children who have to get homework done before their only light sets in the west while their classmates have canned light and the internet, a safe quiet bed to sleep in and access to refrigerated food and cupboards of nutrition at their fingertips.
Last week a FaceBook friend commented that if the parents of these children could not find a way to afford better living for them, the parents should relinquish the children to adoption. What? Aside from the entirely different story of an overcrowded Foster Care System and millions of un-adopted children already waiting for homes – there is a selfishness issue there.
If a family is willing to take on a child and pay for them for eighteen years, could that same family take in the child’s family for a shorter period of time and foster them to self-sufficiency? Would they use the extra bedroom for a child and his parent(s). No, the child did not contribute to the parents un or underemployment and the child did not make the choices that led the family into homelessness, but what emotional cost are we willing to charge the child and entire family by splitting them apart?
There are no easy answers to Homelessness. Certainly the only solution is housing. Housing, however, costs money – and lots of it.
Ways to access money:
Clearly, the socially acceptable means is employment; however there are few jobs available. I have clients and parents working at hamburger stands and chicken joints and cleaning houses and washing dishes and babysitting, and day laboring and all the jobs the media tells us we need illegal aliens to do. I am sending parents to college and trade schools so they might qualify for better jobs in a skilled sector. It seems, however , that there are not enough jobs that would pay enough for a family to rise out of homelessness and become self-sufficient.
These families are situated in urban settings and not on a commune where Third World work and life are possible. There are no field for subsistence farming, nowhere to herd cows in order to milk them for a glass of milk, and if someone were to kill the animals available in the city for food they will be prosecuted and placed in jail: ending their homelessness temporarily at least.
I don not have an answer to Homelessness. I am constantly frustrated to meet families eager and determined to save themselves when I have no way to house them and no direction to point them to that will guarantee shelter.
Buying with Foodstamps? You CAN use coupons, you SHOULD use coupons! Make those dollars count.
1. Stroll through your local stores to see what items are on sale. Sometimes there are “coupon dispensers” by the item, take a coupon.
2. Make a list of items you need (A Weekly Meal plan is the first, best step for this)
3. Start clipping coupons from the local paper. If you don’t get the paper, buy one , as a friend, ask the library what they do with the inserts, or ask the local recycling center if they will give the coupon section to you.
4. Check on the internet for coupons.
5. ORGANIZE Put your coupons in a binder in plastic sleeves, or photo album sleeve sheets, or an accordion folder. My friend has a collection of envelopes for each Type of coupon. Cleaners in one, beans in another, pasta in another, etc.
6. Take your shopping list AND coupons with you on your trip to the store. I take an empty envelope and move the coupons I am going to use into that envelope at the same time I place the item in my cart. If i have the kids with me, I take tape and let them tape the coupons to the items. This really annoys the clerks though.
Don’t just use the coupons as soon as they are issued. Instead, wait for the item to go on sale, and them combine the sale with the coupon for maximum savings. Several websites list the coupon and sale match-ups each week for major grocery chains across the nation. MoneySavingMom.com is a well-respected blog that posts the best deals one can get with their coupons each week.
Another way to maximize the use of coupons is to stack them with store coupons. Many times, a major grocery or pharmacy chain will put out weekly coupons for their store. These can be combined with the manufacture coupons found online and in the newspaper. Check with the store policy on these types of transactions beforehand. Again, many coupon bloggers such as MoneySavingMom often provide the details on how to do this legally.
Remember to go through the coupons periodically, such as once a month, to ensure that any expired ones get discarded.
Everyday I hear someone tell me that the food stamps they are issued are not enough to feel their family. When I ask if they had a meal plan, a shopping list, or use coupons : I am told NO!
Why wouldn’t you use coupons to feed your family? The money is already free – get the most out of it.
Is there a special “cause” in your life?
Do you Walk for Cancer?
Research and promote autism awareness?
Looking for a cure to Diabetes?
Funding books for the blind?
Rocking AIDs babies?
Housing the homeless?
Feeding the poor?
Remember in High School; we all had to take “Extra Curricular’, non-core classes? I strongly believe life should be like that. Our focus should be shaved enough to let the light of other people’s lives shine in so we become more well-rounded and less selfish.
Feeding 3rd world countries?
Save the Whales
Pro-Gay or Anti-Gay Rights
Hearing Aids for low-income children
Preventing Premature babies
Spay and neutering animals
Free legal aid for victims of Domestic Violence
————————- Do you do these with a friend, or privately and on your own?
Have you made a difference? Is someone or something’s life better because you turned your head and looked at something you wanted to make better?
Car seat safety
Arts in the schools
How would you feel if anyone saw what you were doing and told you that you did not do enough? If they complained that someone took your photo while you were volunteering and posted it to their supports, so now they assume you are doing your good work for self glory?
Ending drug sales to youth
Removing junk food from school vending machines
Tying yellow ribbons to trees
Delivering food to the homebound
Exposing homelessness in our cities
Trash pick up at the beach