Archive for the ‘Poverty’ Category
Hilary Hoynes is a University of California at Berkeley economist who wrote a particularly notable paper last year. Instead of increasing dependency, as conservative critics have repeatedly claimed, Hoyen’s paper showed that, for women at least, food stamp use during pregnancy and early childhood has exactly the opposite impact of what conservatives allege: It actually increases economic self-sufficiency when children grow up, in the next generation.
Just weeks after the USDA reported that 14.5% of American households struggled to put food on the table, today the House of Representatives passed, 217-210, a shameful bill that cuts $40 billion to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP or food stamps). Such a move would end benefits for approximately 3.8 million low-income people and deny 210,000 children school lunch and breakfast. At a time of instability in the economy, high numbers of unemployment and hunger, it is indefensible that any lawmaker that claims to want to help Americans would vote for such a horrendous bill.
The U.S. Department of Labor said Tuesday it will extend the federal minimum wage and overtime protections provided by the Fair Labor Standards Act to direct-care health workers, who are among the lowest paid employees in the country. The inclusion, which goes into effect January 1, 2015, will benefit nearly 2 million people, 90 percent of them women, working mainly in homes. Their minimum hourly wage will now match that of most American workers—$7.25 an hour, and pay-and-a-half for working more than 40 hours a week.