Letter to the Editor, Philadelphia Inquirer

The Philadelphia Inquirer published our Letter to the Editor in response to the news that 80% of caregivers applying for cash assistance in Pennsylvania are being denied because of new job-search requirements. We encourage you to write letters of your own, and to help publicize the federal Rise Out of Poverty (RISE) Act. Please sign the petition, encourage your organizations and networks to endorse the campaign, and urge your US Representatives in Congress to sign on.

Letters to the Editor, The Philadelphia Inquirer
Posted: September 26, 2013

Moms at work (parts in italics were cut in the printed version)

As a single mother and former welfare recipient, I was disgusted to learn that as many as eight of every ten applications for cash assistance are being denied because of a new rule requiring applicants to search for at least three jobs and document their efforts. (“Denials up in Pa. for welfare aid,” September 16).   Who is to care for the children while their mothers do this?

Philadelphia already has the distinction of having the highest level of deep poverty of any large US city.  Mothers are skipping meals so our children can eat.  Enough is enough. Being a mother is a full time job, just one without a wage.  Our work is given lip service as “the hardest job there is” from President Obama on down, yet mothers are denied resources – including welfare – and that puts children at risk of being put in foster care.  One practical proposal in Congress is the “Rise Out of Poverty (RISE) Act” HR 3486 sponsored by US Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI), which would change the goal of TANF (welfare “reform”) to ending child poverty, rather than denying moms and children benefits.  Shame on the Corbett administration for their cruelty towards children and mothers already struggling for survival.

Pat Albright
Every Mother is a Working Mother Network
pat@allwomencount.net

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