Tag: Poverty

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National

Kennedy’s vision for mental health never realized

In this Oct. 31, 1963 file photo, President John F. Kennedy signs a bill authorizing $329 million for mental health programs at the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Bill Allen, File) by Michelle R. SmithAssociated Press Writer PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The last piece of legislation President John F. Kennedy signed turns 50 this month: the Community Mental Health Act, which helped transform the way people with mental illness are treated and cared for in the United States.

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Opinion

When it comes to health, place matters

by Brian Smedley WASHINGTON-The implementation of the Affordable Care Act is an achievement Americans can be proud of. Making sure that all our brothers and sisters, children and grandchildren, have proper health insurance makes us a stronger, more prosperous nation. Amid this important change, however, we cannot ignore the work that remains to be done, especially in communities of color. Insurance cards are not enough.

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National

Panera CEO clueless about hunger till his food stamp diet

Ron Shaich, founder and CEO of Panera Bread and president of the Panera Bread Foundation. (CNN Photo/Courtesy Panera Bread) by Ron Shaich (CNN) — I thought I knew a thing or two about hunger. I’ve met thousands of people who struggle to feed themselves and their families, visited dozens of soup kitchens, food pantries, homeless shelters and food banks, and worked closely with nonprofit organizations like Feeding America in developing five “Panera Cares” community cafes with no set prices. I really thought I understood the scope of the problem. But let me tell you something — I had no clue. My SNAP Challenge last week taught me that merely observing someone else’s plight does not hold a candle to consciously altering your habits to better understand what it might be like to live someone else’s life.

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National

Employment gap between rich, poor widest on record

Annette Guerra poses for a photo at her home in San Antonio. Guerra, 33, has been looking for a full-time job for more than a year after finishing nursing school. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)by Hope YenAP Business Writer WASHINGTON (AP) — The gap in employment rates between America’s highest- and lowest-income families has stretched to its widest levels since officials began tracking the data a decade ago, according to an analysis of government data conducted for The Associated Press. Rates of unemployment for the lowest-income families — those earning less than $20,000 — have topped 21 percent, nearly matching the rate for all workers during the 1930s Great Depression.

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National

Hawaii schools struggle to keep new teachers

Dennis Tynan, right, talks to 9th grader Chyda Iokua during a 9th grade social studies class at Nakakuli High and Intermediate School in Waianae, Hawaii on Friday, Aug. 9, 2013. Hawaii, the only state with a single, statewide district, has long had to turn to the mainland because local teacher education programs can’t produce enough graduates to fill classrooms across the islands, especially in remote schools. (AP Photo/Jennifer Sinco Kelleher) by Jennifer Sinco KelleherAssociated Press Writer WAIANAE, Hawaii (AP) — Hawaii’s Department of Education is offering bonuses, cultural classes and mentoring in an effort to keep new teachers.

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Opinion

Focus on poverty, not the middle-class

GEORGE E. CURRY (NNPA)—Several of us were sharing our views on radio Sunday night with Gary Byrd when my friend and colleague Cash Michaels urged us to remember that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated while organizing poor people. This is a good time to remember that as President Obama seeks ways to strengthen the middle class and civil rights leaders focus on celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Aug. 28, 1963 March on Washington.

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Opinion

Is income inequality ‘morally wrong’?

President Barack Obama speaks at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg, Mo., Wednesday, July 24, 2013. Obama hit the road to deliver remarks in Illinois and Missouri kicking off a series of speeches that lay out his vision for rebuilding the economy. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) (CNN) — It’s getting harder to shock people with stats about income inequality. Americans know they live in a two-tier country — one where the uber-super-ultra-rich are leaving the rest of us behind; where, as Michael Moore famously put it, 400 of the richest people control the same amount of wealth as 150 million others; where, as President Obama said in a speech on Wednesday, the “average CEO has gotten a raise of nearly 40% since 2009, but the average American earns less than he or she did in 1999.” “Even though our businesses are creating new jobs and have broken record profits,” the president said in his prepared remarks, “nearly all the income gains of the past ten years have continued to flow to the top 1%.”

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International

Argentina: Women will now collect welfare money

Andrea Nerone, center, sits with her daughters Malena, right, and Candela at their home during an interview in Buenos Aires, Argentina.(AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko) by Debora Rey BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Andrea Nerone lost her home and later was denied welfare to support her family after her husband abandoned her and their four children late last year. Unemployed and no longer able to pay the rent on their previous home, Nerone crowded with her kids into a modest house owned by her mother and collected welfare for a few months. But the payments were cut off when the government determined that the children’s father was employed and thus able to support them. The big problem: the family was no longer in contact with him and he wasn’t giving them any money.