Moving Poverty Doesn’t Solve Poverty

Mayor Dave, the oh-so-intelligent leader of Madison has a new plan to battle poverty in the city.  The brilliance is astounding!  All you have to do in order to solve poverty in the city is move the poverty to other towns!  Nevermind the fact that there will still be poor families, he won’t have to deal with them!

Supposedly, this is to reduce the pockets of poverty and the high rate of low income students in the schools.  40% of Madison students are on free or reduced lunches, compared to (from what I’ve heard) 20-25% in other areas.  Yes, that does sound a bit high, but there’s a reason for it.

Let’s say that you don’t have a car.  Where do you have to live to have the best chance of finding a job?  I live 20 miles from Madison, and if I didn’t have a car, my chances of having an income would be seriously diminished.  Right now, I know of two places in Evansville that are hiring.  And at least one of those is part-time.  And if you didn’t have a car and found a job in a smaller town, would you be able to walk there?  Would you be able to get your kids to a daycare that accepted assistance?

And even if you do have a car, can you afford the gas? I spend one day of every week just to pay for my gas.  Another day and a half goes to pay for my daycare.  I’m working HALF of my week for free!  And that’s based on gross income, not my take home.

If the mayor wanted to truly do something about poverty, he’d be looking for viable solutions, not trying to shuffle the low income families to other areas.  Plus, there will still be plenty of people who CHOOSE to live in the rougher parts of town.  Yes, there are plenty of people who live where they do out of necessity, but there are also plenty who live there because they feel a sense of community.  It may be a drug and crime infested community, but it’s theirs.

There has to be another way to deal with this issue.  Out of sight is not out of existence!

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