Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Action Alert: Low-Income Families in DC are at Risk - We Need Your Support

As the DC budget process unfolds, Mayor Fenty is proposing to keep the budget balanced by cutting funds to assist struggling families through the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. Rather than incentivize families to move toward work, the new penalties are likely to push at-risk families into even more dire circumstances, such as homelessness. Currently a family of three receives a TANF grant of $428.00 per month; the Mayor's proposal could result in terminating all support for these families if a parent fails to meet a work requirement without considering the families individual situation.

Why should aging advocates be concerned? Ensuring economic security across the lifespan requires protecting access to income supports for vulnerable families and elders. The proposed TANF cuts in Washington DC would impact the ability of working families to meet today’s basic needs and lend to increased economic vulnerability in late life. We need your help in telling the Mayor how crucial TANF is to so many in the DC area and how his proposal will ultimately hurt his low-income constituents, today and in the future. In these tough economic times, it is important for low-income women and their families to have access to services and supports that will put them on a pathway to economic security.

Support efforts to protect TANF benefits for Washington DC residents by:

1) Adding your organization to a sign-on letter that tells the Mayor why his proposal needs to be revised. Contact Katie Kerstetter (kerstetter@dcfpi.org) by noon on July 29th to sign-on.

2) Attending a meeting with Council Staff on July 29that 1 p.m. in the lobby of the John A. Wilson Building at 1350 Pennsylvania Ave NW Washington, DC.

3) Signing-on to an online petition organized by Save our Safety Net.

4) Spreading the word and sharing this pertinent information with your professional and social networks.

Thank you!

Questions? Please contact Debbie Billet-Roumell at dbroumell@wowonline.org or call 202-464-1596.

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