What can be changed about poverty in America? Everything. One will never truly know poverty unless they have lived in poverty themselves. Poverty is caused by society’s trends changing. Poverty is associated with homelessness, the lack of education, a culture of poverty, epidemic diseases such as AIDS, and illiteracy overpopulation. Congress and I will help break these cycles of poverty by; enhancing economic growth with targeted action, mandate over time in the workplace, mandating higher education/training, increasing the Earned Income Tax Credit for individual workers without children, establishing work schedules that financially benefit individuals, and offer equal healthcare benefits. This will all be possible because the government will set aside funds from higher taxpayers and create better opportunities for everyone.
According to National Alliance to End Homelessness, there is an estimated 553,742 people in America experiencing homelessness every night and according to the most recent national point-in-time estimate (January 2017). This represents a rate of approximately 17 people experiencing homelessness per every 10,000 people in the general population according to the National Alliance to End Homelessness. The rich are getting richer while the poor are getting poorer. The middle class is disappearing in a whole. I believe we as a country need to help each other more.
I propose a plan that if your household makes over 100,000 a year and you pay taxes, the government has to put aside 15 percent for housing, 15 percent for overtime pay and 15 percent for equal health benefits for the poor. Unlike the Five-Borough-Ten-Year Plan Mayor Bill de Blasio introduced to the people of NYC in May 2014, to create and preserve 200,000 high-quality, affordable homes over ten years. (NYC Housing Plan, City of New York. 2019). That plan helped create jobs but it did not correct the basic problem at hand. Most individuals are still struggling to find housing because some income restrictions start at $70,000-$100,000 annually. The plan I’m implementing would be an actual plan that will solve one of the biggest problems America is facing. So struggling individuals who have an annual income of $50,000 or less, those living on the streets, and inside shelters will have first priority to clean, suitable, and adequate apartments or homes.
Millions of Americans graduated high school and went off to college because they could afford to. Meaning they didn’t have to work as much to provide for themselves and their families. Some who could not afford it had to work all their lives to keep food on the table for their children, a roof over their sick family members’ head, the lights on for there mother, father, sisters and brothers. More and more individuals are not reaping the benefits of college because they are still paying off debt and are not bringing enough money home. People are living from paycheck to paycheck with an ever-lasting thought of what about next week? And some can’t even see past the next day. There will be a plan implemented that will change that, because instead of 40 hour weeks being the normal workweek. With the 15% set aside from taxpayers, employers will be able to issue 50 hour work weeks plus overtime to 50 percent of their employees who are suffering financially. A normal week would be an extra two hours a day for a 5 day work week. A trial period will go into effect before this will be implemented. Then it will be surveyed to make sure the ones who deserve this increased pay gets it.
The Earned Income Tax Credit will work in your favor if you work and don’t have children. This credit will allow you to keep more money in your pocket when tax time comes around. You will have to use a portion of it to achieve a degree or enter a training program of your choice. Qualifying for the earn income tax credit it will automatically mandate you to attend a post-secondary education or training program. This will guarantee a boost in the economy because more people will be qualified for better jobs. By fixing one problem, we are creating a system that will continue to recycle positive growth into the community.
Having a higher-paying job can entitle you to equal healthcare as your counter partners. Society will begin generating more money, that way these programs can fluster. Generating better healthcare means the risk of death-associated diseases are minimized. People will be better educated of the risk associated with poor hygiene and other health issues. Better health care means when you go to the hospital you can be taken care of to the best of the doctor’s ability unlike when you have Medicaid or no health insurance. Many hospitals tend to do the bear minimum for you when you have low income health insurance. The working class will actually be able to start saving money because their health insurance will cover all or a potion of their medical expenses for the top health care.
Therefore with all these great things happening, less people will be forced out of their homes due to the increase of rent costs. Individuals will have better access to health care and have affordable health care offered to them. People will be educated properly. The poor will stop becoming poorer. Our constituents will have education opportunities offered to them that gives hope to America and this country can begin looking at poverty differently. We all will help break the cycle of poverty one step at a time.
- The State of Homelessness in America National Alliance to End Homelessness, 2019, online, article.
- Grace, Audrey. Humanities, politics, and you. 10 Ways to End Poverty, June 28, 2014, online article.