Skip to main content

Alarming Increase in Social Safety Net Need Says Think Tank Study

"According to a first-ever study released by the nonpartisan California Budget Project, state residents are turning to public assistance in dramatic numbers. With unemployment at a 14-year high, the number of food stamp recipients has quadrupled in the last year. Welfare rolls that shed more than 500 families a month in 2007 now serve 2,240 new families each month. And tens of thousands are turning to government-funded health care following job losses and a decline in employer-sponsored benefits."

Above is the opening paragraph from the article "Study shows increased reliance on social safety net in California," in the San Jose Mercury News a few days ago.

This news and these statistics add to the daunting task for the State to find its way clear from a gigantic, ever-growing budget deficit.

The article tells us the think tank "called for [state] legislators to prioritize families destitute families, as state legislators continue battling over a $41 billion [over a period of 18 months]budget shortfall. Democrats and Republicans both propose social service cuts to help close the deficit, but the extent of the cuts, and whether to raise taxes, has the Legislature paralyzed."

Quoting further from the article:

California Budget Project director Jean Ross, argues that now is precisely when public funds must flow into social programs — the "toughest economic climate that we have faced in the post-[WWII] era in this country." Her report calls for "carefully chosen" but unspecified tax increases.

"Every dollar that moves into low-income families moves immediately to local grocers, clothing stores and landlords," said Ross, whose research center advocates for low-income Californians. "To cut back at a time like this is exactly the opposite of what we need to do in order to keep retail spending up."


Popular posts from this blog

More Homeless Hate from Marcos Breton

There was a long spell a handful of years ago when Marcos Breton said something so fully ridiculous in one of his hateful screeds against homeless folk that it appeared to be very apparent he had been taken off the Homeless Beat by his superiors. Unhappily, after a few months, Breton was again writing disparaging columns about homeless folk

In today's Bee [3/5/17], Breton has written one of his longest columns. Online, it is titled "The price downtown Sacramento is paying for Mayor Steinberg’s homeless crusade
Read more here: It goes on for days. The message, essentially, is this: Homeless people poop; they're getting a great deal of what they want from the overmuch-helpful mayor; and business people proximate to Chavez Park are made miserable by the forever-disgusting homeless that are there in great number.

O.K. Let's get into all this a bit. Except in Breton's mind, homeless pe…

Homeless Sacramentans lose case that would have given them the right to set up outdoor camping

8/11/13 I certainly give attorneys Mark Merin and Cat Williams credit for pursuing a case against the city of Sacramento to give homeless Sacramentans the right to set up tents and a campsite. I wanted them to win their case, but they didn't. They lost it.

BUT, it is also necessary to look at the particulars of the case that Merin and Williams brought and see that the situation underlying the court case was not very compelling.

During the period eight years ago when 22 homeless campers set up their tents and brought in supplies to Mark Merin's vacant lot at C Street, near 12th, there was loud noise and plenty of other mayhem. Drug dealers were on the street encouraging buys from the campers. The Hernandez couple that lived in a house nearby were constantly being taunted by the campers, disrupting their lives.

Per always with Safe Ground camps, calm was deserted for the sake of boisterousness.

Leader John Kraintz and the other Safe Grounders would claim to have signed strict a…

The Mission Five Years Ago, And Today

I have spent the night the past two weeks plus at the Union Gospel Mission and am having an excellent time of it -- not only regards to sleeping in the dorm that the mission has, but also listening to the sermons that are delivered in the early evening. The Christmas music that is performed is also splendid. [And the food -- the FOOD -- has been fantastic during my stay so far! A happier Tom there couldn't be.] I chatted with a pal last night about The Mish – about how things were about five years ago when we both used the mission’s services frequently, and how thing are, today.
Five years ago, there were a lot scuffles between the guys when the front gate was opened in the early afternoon and in the area near the contact window there were some brawls as guys fought over where guys were in line to get a bed in the dorm.
Nowadays, however, the mission is very much a peaceful place both on the grounds of the facility and and out on the street.
I do not know what transformative eve…