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August 31, 2011

Helping people overcome poverty

Because the rules and regulations are written so poorly, once people in poverty have the courage to step up and ask for help they are only given enough assistance to keep them at a poverty level. Even worse is the fact when they try to help themselves by getting a job, they aren’t allowed to make any kind of realistic earnings. This is for fear that their cushion from the government will be taken away from them.

Many times people who need assistance have situations that don’t allow them to make these true life or death decisions easily.

Maybe the answer should be that the rules need to be rewritten and written using common sense. Allow people to get help but also work if they can.

Let them earn a living income without taking away that cushion. Then, if their earnings take them over a “cost of living” level, reduce their assistance dollar for dollar.

Don’t take it away all at once. Help people, don’t hurt them.

Mark Greene
Shawnee

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