Lawmakers look to lift welfare cap to help low-income families

Lawmakers look to lift welfare cap to help low-income families


THROUGH SURVEILLANCE FOOTAGE. HE’LL BE SUMMONSED TO COURT. BARRY: 1 IN 6 CHILDREN LIVES BELOW THE POVERTY LINE IN MASSACHUSETTS. 22NEWS STATE HOUSE REPORTER ELISHA MACHADO IS LIVE IN BOSTON WHERE STATE LAWMAKERS WANT TO PROVIDE MORE MONEY TO FAMILIES IN POVERTY. ELISHA MACHADO: MANY OF US TAKE BASIC NECESSITIES FOR GRANTED LIKE FOOD AND CLOTHING. BUT SOME LOW-INCOME FAMILIES IN THE STATE STRUGGLE TO AFFORD THESE ESSENTIALS UNDER THE CURRENT WELFARE SYSTEM. STATE LAWMAKERS ARE CONSIDERING A BILL THAT WOULD LIFT THE WELFARE CAP ON CHILDREN, AND HELP PROVIDE BASIC NEEDS LIKE DIAPERS AND FOOD. A MOTHER WITH ONE CHILD CURRENTLY RECEIVES $478 DOLLARS PER MONTH. STATE REP. MARJORIE DECKER, (D) CAMBRIDGE: “FAMILIES DON’T JUST FEED ONE CHILD. THEY FEED BOTH CHILDREN SO IN FACT, WE’RE ACKNOWLEDGING THAT THEY’RE GOING TO TAKE THOSE RESOURCES AND THEY’RE GOING TO DIVIDE THEM BETWEEN TWO CHILDREN AS OPPOSED TO MEETING THE NEEDS OF EACH CHILD.” UNDER THE BILL, FAMILIES WITH ANOTHER CHILD WOULD RECEIVE AN EXTRA $100 DOLLARS PER MONTH, MONEY THAT WOULD HELP THEM AFFORD BASIC NECESSITIES. ONE MOTHER SAID HER FAMILY WENT WITHOUT TOILET PAPER AND LAUNDRY DETERGENT WHILE ON WELFARE. SHE IS SUPPORTING HER CHILDREN WHILE GOING TO COLLEGE, HOPING TO LIFT HER FAMILY OUT OF POVERTY. MAREN TOBER, SOUTH BOSTON MOTHER: “YOU CAN GET A MUCH BETTER PAYING POSITION AND ULTIMATELY WE DON’T HAVE TO BE ON BENEFITS. WE DON’T WANT TO BE ON BENEFITS; NOBODY WANTS TO BE. I THINK WE ALL JUST, WE HAVE TO, THAT’S WHY WE DO IT. YOU NEED TO SUPPORT YOUR FAMILY SOMEHOW.” ELISHA MACHADO: CRITICS ARGUE THAT THEY DON’T WANT THEIR TAXPAYER DOLLARS GOING TO FAMILIES THAT ABUSE THE SYSTEM, BUT ONE LAWMAKER SAID THAT’S NOT THE CASE. STATE SENATOR SAL DIDOMENICO, (D) EVERETT: “THIS IS NOT A HAND OUT. I HAVEN’T MET ONE PERSON THAT’S HAVING CHILDREN TO GET $100 DOLLARS EXTRA A MONTH. THAT’S RIDICULOUS.” THE NUMBER OF LOW-INCOME FAMILIES RECEIVING CASH ASSISTANCE HAS DECLINED BY MORE THAN 80-THOUSAND IN THE LAST 24 YEARS. ELISHA MACHADO: LIFTING THE CAP WOULD HELP MORE THAN 9-THOUSAND CHILDREN IN

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