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THE other side of the Welfare Coin

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Okay so we've talked about the illegal alien who gets public assistance

Now what about the US citizens who milk the system

The alcoholic and/or druggie who refuses treatment and refuse to quit

Are we obligated as a society to help this individual indefinitely??

Can we mandate sobriety as the price for aid?

What about the disabled person who hides funds

or exaggerates their disability to avoid having to work?

When they are caught can we deny them funding even though they are disabled?

What about the welfare mom who when we cut her off we cut off her children.

Is not getting a job grounds for removal of the children?

What bout the person who refuses to work??

Can we allow them to be homeless and starve ??

Just exactly how much to we owe citizens of this country who lie, cheat, and othewise milk the system?

When do we say to the addict--yours is an illness of choice--You can choose to stop?

Just how tough do we have a right to be?

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Those are questions we as a society and those elected to public office have been struggling with for years.

We all know that there are many who abuse the welfare system.

There are people who are too lazy to work and have figured a way to milk the welfare system.

There are women who have turned themselves in "baby machines" to stay on public assistance.

I am sure someone has more knowledge of what percent abuse the system, I don't.

The question is how do we minimize the fraud, waste, and abuse in the welfare system without hurting those in real need.

The government does not have the work force to verify that everybody is "playing by the rules".

Should the government offer rewards to those who turn in those who are abusing the system? I think so.

I think that if we were able to eliminate the fraud, waste and abuse in the welfare system, the savings could be recycled into the system to help people to get the training/education to get off the welfare roles. Of course the assumption is that people want to get off the welfare roles.

One of the stigma's that is out there is: You are no better than your current/last job.

The problem is: Some people don't take a "lesser" job in fear that they could not get the type of job they had before. As long as employers have this attitude, it will be difficult to get people who can work to get a "lesser" job while seeking the type of job that they had before. On the flip side, I think it is easier to find a job when you currently have a job.

So far in my life I have not received any welfare, un-employment etc. (and I hope I never have to).

I have been working for a paycheck since I was 16 (cleaning a bakery after school and on weekends). At times in my life I worked 2 jobs or did "odd job" every once in a while to earn a few extra dollars.

With that being said, someone with different life experiences may have a different view point than mine.

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Okay so we've talked about the illegal alien who gets public assistance

Now what about the US citizens who milk the system

The alcoholic and/or druggie who refuses treatment and refuse to quit

Are we obligated as a society to help this individual indefinitely??

Can we mandate sobriety as the price for aid?

What about the disabled person who hides funds

or exaggerates their disability to avoid having to work?

When they are caught can we deny them funding even though they are disabled?

What about the welfare mom who when we cut her off we cut off her children.

Is not getting a job grounds for removal of the children?

What bout the person who refuses to work??

Can we allow them to be homeless and starve ??

Just exactly how much to we owe citizens of this country who lie, cheat, and othewise milk the system?

When do we say to the addict--yours is an illness of choice--You can choose to stop?

Just how tough do we have a right to be?

Actually, many of those questions are already addressed in federal law. I'll not belabor that discussion, but will suggest that the scope and magnitude of THIS problem PALE in comparison to the scope and magnitude of fraud and waste, aka the fleecing of America, taking place with the rebuilding of Iraq. By that I mean that while there may be many more persons in the US who "scam the system", there are far fewer persons/corporations doing so for FAR more dollars (in each instance AND in the aggregate) with the Iraq reconstruction.

If you want to be outraged and do something that really matters, look into how many millions (billions!) of American taxpayer dollars are unaccounted for in Iraq.

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DANG!!! Got some early birds at the cafe, don't we? :B)

I get what you're saying, Rocky, and I do think government waste in all areas (not just Iraq) is infuriating. BUT, that's not the topic. :wink2:

I'm not a big fan of government assistance programs that allow such abuse of the system. Aren't they supposed to be used to help someone "get back on their feet"? Meaning.... for a short period of time for a specific purpose?

Nothing gets my goat more than someone not working for years merely because they don't have to since they are eligible to collect MY tax money!

Unfortunately, the only way to catch those people is for people like us to turn them in since the government can't/won't spend the money and manpower to actually check on recipients to make sure they really do need the help and really are doing something to help themselves. That would mean bigger government and I don't like that idea either. :confused:

But, even if we turn them in, what's the government going to do with that information?

How could things be changed? I'd really like to see assistance of any kind limited to twice in a person's lifetime for max six months.

I went on unemployment when I got laid off right before 9/11. I kept a log of all my job searching activities - places I applied with, dates/times and people I spoke with. I was told that it was necessary to keep my eligibility for unemployment (I would have anyway, but that's not the point), not one person ever asked me to prove that I was really looking for a job and actively seeking getting free from the need to draw unemployment.

The system is bogged down and people who "work the system" know where the cogs are and that many times, it's cheaper, quicker and easier to just pay them than to actually take the time and do the work to prove they don't deserve the help. :realmad:

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The system is bogged down and people who "work the system" know where the cogs are and that many times, it's cheaper, quicker and easier to just pay them than to actually take the time and do the work to prove they don't deserve the help. :realmad:

And as your angry avatar shows, it makes people angry ... it is a disincentive for others to work. Why should I work when they make almost as much by being a lying cheat? Fairness in the system is important.

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How could things be changed? I'd really like to see assistance of any kind limited to twice in a person's lifetime for max six months.

Belle you are a sound individual so that sounds reasonable, and works with 90 (maybe more)% of cases and people. God forbid anything horrible should happen to you or anyone else that genuinely makes it impossible to work---catstrophic accident or illness or something like that, which does happen. I dont know what should happen in those cases but pitching them on the street seems harsh.

You also have the problem of people who genuinely can not take care of themselves or have some severe handicap, the severely retarded etc.

I think Id actually like to see the welfare system do more than provide food assistance and a check, but incorporate rehabs, job training, counselling (..or whatever is needed) and look at it as an investment in people and work to either get them off drugs and trained into a productive and self supporting job within x amount of time or find productive work within the capabilities of their handicap and bring the monthly stipend down.

As it is, it seems like the system is so loose that they pretty much mail out the check and have little ot no oversight or input into the persons collecting. I think if it were tightened, and programs initiated that it would not only be easier to weed out the frauds, but it would genuinely help people more that really need it.

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Mo said:"

spacer.gif

Okay so we've talked about the illegal alien who gets public assistance

Now what about the US citizens who milk the system

The alcoholic and/or druggie who refuses treatment and refuse to quit

Are we obligated as a society to help this individual indefinitely??

Can we mandate sobriety as the price for aid?

What about the disabled person who hides funds

or exaggerates their disability to avoid having to work?

When they are caught can we deny them funding even though they are disabled?

What about the welfare mom who when we cut her off we cut off her children.

Is not getting a job grounds for removal of the children?

What bout the person who refuses to work??

Can we allow them to be homeless and starve ??

Just exactly how much to we owe citizens of this country who lie, cheat, and othewise milk the system?

When do we say to the addict--yours is an illness of choice--You can choose to stop?

Just how tough do we have a right to be?"

I couldn't get the quote feature to work, so I did it this way. I wonder these same things.

What about the person that's decided they're disabled and that "we" owe them their living? While they say they're waiting for the Social Security people to make a decision whether they're eligible for assistance or not, they hook up an extension cord to their next door neighbor's house and supply their house with electricity, albeit not enough to run a normal American household in 2007, but they can either run their coffee maker or their computer, they can cook on their electric stove, but not while the space heater is going. They don't have to be to work at any specific time, as long as they time their needs around their favorite tv shows, they're not feeling any strain.

So they continue to ignore the bills they've got which are in the thousands of dollars and use their neighbor's electricity.

Not only is that dangerous, but my God, is that not stealing?

I know a family here in town that was renting one of the church's parsonages. They had a gas bill of almost $2,000, so they never got gas turned on and heated up water on the stove to do dishes and take baths - this was just 2 years ago! When the church board found out the Gas Company removed the meter, the board put the gas account in the church's name and these people STILL didn't have to pay the bill to get to use gas.

I understand if a family or even a single person has an honest need, and I understand that that need may exceed 6 months, but it would seem to me that there's a matter of integrity that's never considered.

I don't know how many months you'd have to ignore that gas bill to get it up near $2,000 - seems to me it'd take a pretty long time. Hell, I get threatened with disconnection if mine exceeds the second month mark. My last bill was $165 (over 2 months) and I got a phone call reminding me that payment was due or I'd be disconnected in a couple weeks.

I think our system goes for the blanket approach when a more individual approach might be something to look into.

There is a big difference between people who can't help themselves or have children to care for too, asking for help for a temporary term and the people who won't even try to work and take care of themselves, but expect the rest of us to pay their way. I know examples of both and I tell you, I never mind helping out my fellow man when they have a genuine need.

I refuse to contribute to someone who's as much a legal adult as I am, is equally as able to work as I am, yet refuses to work, but expends as much time and energy on getting around the system as I do on earning my living, and then forces me to pay their way through manipulation of the system.

People who really need help aren't always able to get what they honestly need because of these others who've taken all there was when they really didn't have an honest need for help - they've simply figured out how to outsmart the system.

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I think it's easier to discuss one thing at a time, so I think for the moment we should take unemployment off the table in this discussion.

When we work, we all pay into it and it is a kind of insurance. If you had a legitimate claim on any other kind of insurance you would put in the claim, right? And if you had more than 2 incidents where you were rightfully due a claim, you wouldn't decline it, would you? Today's job market leaves some workers very insecure so I would hesitate to limit unemployment insurance to two times and you're out. And I wouldn't put a limit of 6 months on it either in all areas of the country. Some areas just don't have jobs available for anybody.

I think one of the first things we should do is review the current laws in view of today's current standards. What are the average rental costs, food costs, etc. I think some of these laws may be archaic and need changing. All these laws pertain to the state one lives in, so a stipend in AK would need to be larger than one in TX, for example.

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Ok, let's take the first question of the first post on this thread.

Mo said "Okay so we've talked about the illegal alien who gets public assistance

Now what about the US citizens who milk the system

The alcoholic and/or druggie who refuses treatment and refuse to quit"

I'd like to discuss the US citizens who milk the system.

What would you do if your neighbor, your adult child, your friend, anyone you know, told you that they were getting electricity to their home by hooking into their neighbor's? Would it be different if it were electricity they were "pirating" or cable tv?

What about people who actually are able to work, but deliberately present themselves as disabled in order to collect monthly support from the government instead of put in 40 hours a week to earn their living?

Does it make you mad or does it make no difference to you whatsoever? Somewhere in the middle?

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This discussion may be helped along by some actual facts of the US Budget 2007.

The alcoholic and/or druggie who refuses treatment and refuse to quit

Are we obligated as a society to help this individual indefinitely??

If the discussion is about 'government' money, the availability of assistance based solely upon an addiction has been slowly reduced to where, in many states, getting any state assistance is next to impossible...based solely upon an addiction...and getting SSI/SSD is no longer available...based solely upon an addiction. Government spending in this area is one thing we, the people, can do something about...because the politicians like smokescreen issues when other issues are too hot to handle, so if it's government spending
in this area
that's bugging someone, the next 2 years (until after the Presidential election) are favorable for presenting concerns...and an election year is the hottest iron to strike for any issue to be presented to politicians. Strike often and strike with as much citizen force behind the blow as possible.

If the discussion is about private money...churches, organizations, businesses, etc....there are many ways to address concerns. Volunteer to sit on the boards of any agencies, organizations, etc. that one feels is enabling and not helping. If volunteering is not an option, then one can write letters to the board members, request time to speak at any open board meetings (or any other open meetings), contact local media with concerns, etc. If one is giving tithes and offerings to a church, most legitimate churches allow one the option to designate how one's support is used. That is true with many helping organizations and agencies, too. However, one must realize that private monies are just that...private...and not costing one a dime that one does not willingly give.

What about the welfare mom who when we cut her off we cut off her children.

Is not getting a job grounds for removal of the children?

First, since Welfare Reform there is assistance available for only a total of 5 years.

Second, remove the children to where? It is by far cheaper to pay Welfare benefits than it is to pay foster care. The average cost of foster care in Kansas 12 years ago was $80,000/year per child...not including medical costs. At that time the welfare benefit, not including medical assistance, for one parent with one child was a total of $365/mo. Each additional child up that by increments of about $60/mo per child to the ceiling of 5 children. A single mother with 5 or more children could get a maximum of $7,980.00 a year. That was less than 1/10 of the cost of foster care per year per child. In other words, removing 5 or more children from the home and into foster care cost at least $400,000.00 per year...as opposed to the $7,980.00 in welfare cash benefits.

Just exactly how much to we owe citizens of this country who lie, cheat, and othewise milk the system?

One of my particular soap boxes! Corporate Welfare is appalling this country! :D

If you want to be outraged and do something that really matters, look into how many millions (billions!) of American taxpayer dollars are unaccounted for in Iraq.
Amen.
Unfortunately, the only way to catch those people is for people like us to turn them in since the government can't/won't spend the money and manpower to actually check on recipients to make sure they really do need the help and really are doing something to help themselves.

With Welfare Reform, this is no longer the norm. People who are not working at a full time job with benefits are required to spend at least 4 hours per week day in classes, volunteering in the community and a whole host of other job preparation and job searching activities.

In the late '80's and early '90's I was part of several pilot groups made up of welfare recipients and designed to test out programs with the ends of stopping generational welfare. Not one of us...generational or temporary recipients...argued that Welfare should be a lifestyle. In fact, many of the Welfare Reform points now in use came out of those pilot groups...in which we the recipients told the government what we thought would be actually help. The 5 year limit with actual and required help was the main point all of us said was needed...over and over again. In fact, many of us felt that 5 years was too long.

Unless one has been on welfare, one cannot understand how welfare itself was the biggest contributing factor to generational entrapment.

Not only is that dangerous, but my God, is that not stealing?

I knew a family in exactly the situations described (actually, several, but I know first-hand the situation in this one family...not just rumors around the 'hood). They got turned in...by me.

This family is now 'camping' in their home.

I couldn't believe that's all that was done!

It turned out that the husband (he works a full time job and is the only income in the household) had for many years refused to pay bills for 'luxuries' such as utilities, clothes, medicines and foods needed to meet medically required dietary needs. Because of the husband's income, the wife could not get any assistance whatsoever. Her health declined to the point of near death, but she had brought herself around...with no help whatsoever...to where she could walk without aid and had lost over 100 lbs. But that just angered the husband. When the wife ended up in the hospital twice in one month, she finally asked for help.

Although she had applied for Social Security three times, she had not followed through with the required paperwork and was therefore denied. The most recent denial was 2 months ago. The last time she was in the hospital, she was assigned a case worker. Since then she has been moving more and more towards independence...which includes the $650/mo she may get from Social Security. (Social Security Disability benefits are based solely upon the person's earned income throughout their lifetime. SSI benefits are based upon the current income of the home. If she stays in her husband's home, she will not be eligible for SSI. Even if she lives alone, SSI would supplement SSD only up to $850/mo. She's going to be in the lap of luxury.)

In the meantime, because she was not being physically abused and because of her health issues, she was not accepted at battered woman's shelters. She got desperate enough to stay in homeless shelters, but her health deteriorated quickly...to the point that she can no longer walk more than a few feet (because of damage done to knees, hips and feet while walking the streets during her time in homeless shelters...it is a requirement for adults without children to leave shelters between 7am and 5pm), she is still healing from diabetic sores that covered her body (her average blood sugar levels were 400-600+ during her time in homeless shelters due to absolute lack of access to any food besides donuts and coffee during the day and pasta heavy meals at night, stress (which always has raised her blood sugar levels at least 100 points), exposure and lack of ability to keep herself clean during the day), and she is now facing kidney failure.

I knew the possibility that my turning in this family would send this woman over the edge health-wise...but she needed intervention. That was my thinking, anyways. At least now she's on the radar screen, so to speak. Maybe it was a good thing, maybe it was pointless. Only time will tell. I do know that if she wasn't 'truly' disabled before, she is now...by all accounts...including professionals...so maybe sending her over the edge health-wise was the best thing for her. <_<

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I think it's easier to discuss one thing at a time, so I think for the moment we should take unemployment off the table in this discussion.

When we work, we all pay into it and it is a kind of insurance. If you had a legitimate claim on any other kind of insurance you would put in the claim, right? And if you had more than 2 incidents where you were rightfully due a claim, you wouldn't decline it, would you? Today's job market leaves some workers very insecure so I would hesitate to limit unemployment insurance to two times and you're out. And I wouldn't put a limit of 6 months on it either in all areas of the country. Some areas just don't have jobs available for anybody.

When you work you also pay taxes, which may for welfare and social security disability benefits. The same logic then applies.

I get the beef some have. I know there are people who take advantage of the systems. However, no one is getting rich by taking advantage of those systems. Living on welfare or social security disability is no way to life. I know somone who is disabled. He gets roughly $450 a month in disability. He lives on a campground because that was all he could afford.

I have used welfare - food stamps for about 3 months, medicaide insurance for the kids for a year or so. My kids are now back on medicaide too and I don't feel guilty about it, I am relieved they are covered.

I have worked since I was 15. I've never been unemployed for more than a month or two. Sushi has also always worked. Now he can no longer work in the field he has worked in for many years. He has no real transferable skills. He doesn't qualify for unemployement because he is physically unable to perform the job he had. He doesn't qualify for disability because although he is disabled from his current field of employment, he is not completely disabled. Michigan does not have programs for retraining (which would be the ideal way to get people out of the system). We do not qualify for any assistance other than the insurance for the kids - nothing for us adults, not even insurance. He has prescription medications, which we will have to figure out how to pay for. If he is very lucky, he will find a minimum wage job (the last job he applied for, had 400 other applicants) and will qualify for grants so he can go back to school or he will find a minimum wage job and stick with it for about a year until he is cleared to drive again - IF he is cleared to drive again.

I have been robbing peter to pay paul, and will likely soon file bankruptcy - which means the citizens will pick up the tab, even though it won't be through the system my taxes have paid for for nearly 25 years.

Those of you who get angry about those who abuse the system . . . Can you begin to imagine how angry I am, that I have paid for that system for 25 years, and now that I need to use it temporarily, I cannot??

Rocky is right on the money (ha). Help people go to school so they can get off the system, help them train for a job that will pay the bills. What if we required the CEO's who make billions of dollars to put something more into the system?? Or to at least pay their employees a living wage?

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I geet what you're saying Abi, I totally get it. Being disabled myself, and requiring many maintenence meds, I get it. Now that I'm on Medicare it's a bit better, but if we didn't have some family help we'd be in the soup...and boiled away.

That's one of the reasons I suggested re-evaluating the stipends.

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Abi, you should be able to get some assistance. Neither you or Sushi are trying to work the system. If there weren't folks doing it every day there might be enough money for the ones that honestly needed it.

I don't know if you know this but I spoke to both of my state's welfare and Attorney Generals offices and reported a false front business locally that teaches folks how to work the system. Both of those departments were very very very interested in what I had to say.

It won't fix a thing but I did something about my gut eating at me as I watch people around me every day sitting on their butts who could be out working because they have no reason why they can't. And not enough jobs to go around is no excuse. I see help wanted signs on front of retail and food businesses all over town.

You and Sushi deserve better than that crap dealt you.

Shame on the deadbeats that suck the system.

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My dad worked for the system in NYC for almost 30 years. He saw incidents that ran the gamut. It was his job to look around the apartment and look for things like new televisions and furniture and the like - anything that would indicate that there was a lot more money coming in than what they got from the City.

I'll have a talk with him and ask him to describe that world from his side of the coin. I know that he saw it all - there were some folks that absolutely needed what they got and more. Then there were the drug dealers that made all their money off the books and didn't need it at all.

And don't get me started on the parents that got angry because they were refused an increase on a Friday and left their kids in the office so that the city would care for them over the weekend...

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My kids are now back on medicaide too and I don't feel guilty about it, I am relieved they are covered.

Thank God for the S-CHIP program!

What if we required the CEO's who make billions of dollars to put something more into the system?? Or to at least pay their employees a living wage?

I WISH! Oh that we had politicians with enough balls to get THAT done!

That's PART of the reason why the repugnicans lost control of Congress this year AND why voters in several states (including AZ, and I voted FOR it) enacted higher minimum wage laws than federal law now provides.

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However, no one is getting rich by taking advantage of those systems. Living on welfare or social security disability is no way to life. I know someone who is disabled. He gets roughly $450 a month in disability. He lives on a campground because that was all he could afford.
But you are talking about someone who isn't cheating he system

Not about the person with non reported income whose utilities are being paid by one church, who is getting rent help from another church, etc etc etc. I have watched it-if you play your cards right you can not only get food stamps cash and medical but also get churches and other groups to pay your rent and utilities and provide food. If your rent is paid, your utilities are paid you get free food and medical--that cash is free and clear.

The reason most of us don't understand how this can happen is that most of us are honest and so have no idea the "creative' ways one can milk the system.

When all else fails a discrimination complaint to the ACLU or ombudsman will keep that ball in play for months--Then they pack up and move to another town or state.

Edited by DooWap

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Those of you who get angry about those who abuse the system . . . Can you begin to imagine how angry I am, that I have paid for that system for 25 years, and now that I need to use it temporarily, I cannot??

Rocky is right on the money (ha). Help people go to school so they can get off the system, help them train for a job that will pay the bills. What if we required the CEO's who make billions of dollars to put something more into the system?? Or to at least pay their employees a living wage?

Abi, I'm angry with you. I have an aunt that would not have made it if it hadn't been for government assistance programs.. I also get infuriated when a CEO is fired with a compensation package in the tens of millions, much less the fact that they make that much money when their employees are barely making minimum wage.

Hopefully, Americans will become so fed up with it that things will have to change. I, likewise hope that you are able to get the help that you need to take care of your family. I just can not imagine how hard it must have been trying to make ends meet as a single mom and now trying to catch up and continue on. It's situations like yours and my aunt's where I would gladly give as much as I could to help. :love3:

Something needs to be done, but I don't know what or how to even go about it.

Edited by DooWap

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I just can not imagine how hard it must have been trying to make ends meet as a single mom and now trying to catch up and continue on. It's situations like yours and my aunt's where I would gladly give as much as I could to help. :love3:

I know Belle, you are wonderful. :) And you really hit the nail on the head. It is, by and large, the catching up from being a single mom that has made this so difficult. It was using credit cards to put food on the table and buy clothing for my kids, during all those years of no child support, that left me with credit card debt I have never been able to get from underneath of - despite paying above the minimum payments whenever I could. I was finally reaching a place where I thought I was beginning to see the light of day when all of this occured and now I am right back to using credit cards to put food on the table and clothes on the kids.

But, and perhaps this is the thing that some of you are talking about that angers you so much - unlike those who would abuse the system - we will find a way to get through without the system, because we simply have no choice. We will sell one of the cars, we will move to an apartment, we will give up some of the luxaries that even some of those on the system seem to manage to have and we will keep a roof over our heads and food on the table. If it bankrupts me - well at least then I will get a new start. But it does anger me - having paid into that system for so many years, to be unable to get help in return for a few months.

In the end, my children will learn that there is more to life than a game system (something I have always refused to buy anyway) and they will learn that a family does what it has to in times of need. And, in the end, this too shall pass and there will be brighter days down the road.

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Hahahahahahahaha laughing at myself here. Belle, I had to read your first sentence three times before I realized you weren't saying you were pi$$ed at Abi.

I don't know how your father did it for 30 years, dooj. I was a caseworker for the county welfare system here in Cleveland for almost 2 years, and that was all I could take. Not so much because of the clients, but because of the system. It was just too frustrating.

The thing that bugged me the most about the system was that people who tried to get into training programs were often given the runaround for so long that they finally gave up. Granted, this was a long time ago, and hopefully things have gotten better, but seriously, I'd have a father come in and ask to enroll in a training program. His case file would show that he'd been in 3 or 4 times already with the same request and nothing had been done. At that point, most people would just resign themselves to staying on welfare!

As for abuse of the system, I saw more abuse within the system than from the clients (although I know that certainly happens, too). For example, two nephews of politicians "worked" in our department with some kind of high-falutin' titles and private cubicles away from the rest of us (we were in a huge room with rows and rows of desks, without cubicles even...so much for privacy and dignity for the clients). These two young guys would stroll in at 9:30 or 10 (starting time was 8), read the paper, go get coffee, leave early for a 2-hour lunch, and then call it a day about 3 pm. And I'm sure they made waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more money than I did.

It was my job to review clients' eligibility and troubleshoot anything that had to do with their checks, food stamps, etc. For the eligibility reviews, I had to make home visits. It was criminal, to me, how small the checks were for the disabled and the aged. They were forced to live in horrid surroundings because that was all they could afford. I'll never forget one elderly couple I visited. The little house they rented (shack, almost) was directly across the river from downtown Cleveland, and it had a DIRT FLOOR.

I used to think that if they'd boot off the people who could work, they could give more to those who couldn't. But as far as the stereotypical example of women having babies to get a bigger check, CW's info sounds about right. Adding $60 (or whatever it is now) to the check per month while adding another mouth to feed really doesn't make for a net gain in income. It still irks me that some women keep getting pregnant year after year, when they can get free birth control with their medical coverage.

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I do not like to go to work day after day week fter week year after year.

But I thank God I can

Who wold chose welfare?

I do not believe anyone really would, granted some comunities are so poverty stricken with the crime and illness and abuse that surrounds poverty who would chose to be poor?

no one.

everyone wants a better life for their children. poor folks love their children as much if not more than those with income levels that meet higher standards. being poor is not abuse.

they just do not know how to get out, poverty is a trap. like over eating or drinking a life long learned thing and difficult to shake.

I am thankful for work, and i do not get a large pay check nor do I live in any type of comfort zone.. most families are just one or two paychecks away from homelessness.

I have blamed the poor when i was ignorant or just tired of working and getting no where, but I wont now or ever again.

i am thankful to go to work and try to be a part of something other than worry and frustration and all that not knowing what tommorrow will bring.

IN NY we do have limits a person can only get assistance for a total of two years in a life time.

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Pond raises some good points. Except for the small percentage of people who figure out how to "work" the system (and yes, I believe it's a small percentage), living on welfare is subsisting, at best. It's demeaning and it's a struggle. Sadly, it becomes a generational thing, so embedded in some people's cultures that they lack the inspiration or gumption or whatever they need to break the cycle.

Edited by DooWap

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Pond, if I'm not mistaken New York and other states kicks the recipient over into other types of programs when the "time limit" run out on the other As this link indicates, they still receive benefits but in a differant form. As a resident of that state, you'd probably be able to offer more on that.

http://www.gothamgazette.com/article//20020101/15/659

There are as many ways to screw the system as there are recipients of the benefits. It's the abuse of same that is, of course, the subject and the problem.

As a student of this stuff, we often are taught how to work the same system as well. It's easier to get forgiveness than permission kind of thing. Maybe as a worker I would look the other way or 'oops' lose a proof of income. It's bias, absolutely. And as a students we're also taught that it's common practice to give a few dollars more to the person who cooperates, doesn't chew our azz out because s/he has no food for her babies and appears genuinely humble.

We've done mock appointments in classes where we practice figuring out a way to get services for you but not you. And discussed situations where we'd write a little note in the file as a hostile client if s/he comes in expecting us to buy them a house and feed them as well as find a doctor who will make house calls and finance their third car. More bias, absolutely.

With the caseloads such as they are for these state employees, the recipients working the system is not always a difficult task. Michigan is talking about the over 5000 state employees it's about to cut as well as services that are needed.

Additionally, a person who has traveled this road long enough can spot the weary worker a mile off and be in and out of the office fast with services. Home visits happen but very rarely; as there just isn't the staff and time and resources to do that unless it's mandated in perhaps an abuse case.

Personally, I don't qualify for anything other than medical care for my daughter, since I make too much money for other services. (lol) but so often I've been offered help in filling out the paperwork differantly to get more. For me, it's a personal choice to not do that. This help has come in the form of other recipients as well as a caseworker or two or a teacher. I'm that one who would get busted if I lied and I've not got time to figure all that out and remember to whom I told what. That I can take my child to the doctor without stressing over the money is plenty thank you.

And my goal for this degree is the state job where the decent health benefits are. Alot of them are also recieving benefits too, though.

For some people, getting assistance IS their job. Figuring out which workers, which agencies have money they need to get rid of before they lose the grant, asking around to find the workers who have been doing that thankless exhausting job the longest, or the new one fresh out of school who wants to help anyone who walks into their office cuz the burn out hasn't taken hold yet. Paying attention to the 6 month time period when workers shift clients around, not going in to ask for help on a monday. Going on friday is good if they can work that out. These are a few tricks of the trade.

If a recipient can work the system by finding a worker that will work the same system, it's golden.

Edited by Shellon Fockler-North

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How do ya make someone work who doesnt want to or just will not?

With children it is difficult. they can provide day care and maybe the parent will work for a minute, then they do not.

poverty is NOT abuse nor is it neglect, we can not and should not take children away just because the parents are poor.

even if it does turn into some form of neglect, just where and who do you think will raise and feed and care for the kids?

the foster system here is worse in its abuse of finance than welfare, and the kids coming out are very ill prepared for life and have little to zero support . that ends the very day they turn 18, so a baby is a ticket to a home, again for a minute.

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Pond raises some good points. Except for the small percentage of people who figure out how to "work" the system (and yes, I believe it's a small percentage), living on welfare is subsisting, at best. It's demeaning and it's a struggle. Sadly, it becomes a generational thing, so embedded in some people's cultures that they lack the inspiration or gumption or whatever they need to break the cycle.

I was wondering the same thing.

I believe it becomes generational, I think some lack the inspiration or gumption - because of our societal values. Our economic background determines social standing, not who we are as a person but how much money we or our parents make. It starts as a child in elementary school, when the kids who come from a higher socieo (sp) ecnomic background, who live in a better neighborhood, are not allowed to play with the poor kids who live in a not so good neighborhood.

When not just parents, but even teachers (not all, but certainly some) will give more attention and praise to those who come from wealthier backgrounds.

I faced those issues as a child. My children face them as well. One of the reasons I have kept them in an inner city school (charter, but still inner city) is because I wanted them to be exposed to and become friends with kids from all backgrounds. There is a price for that lesson as well, unfortunately.

Those children who grow up "on the system" who are able to participate in scouts, mentoring programs, big brother big sisters, various afterschool programs, are less likely to repeat the cycle and turn it into a generational problem. Those kids who cannot, often end up lacking the educational assistance they need to get ahead. They lack the positive reinforcements they need to develop a good sense of self esteem. They lack the exposure (and by exposure I mean the opportunity to develop lasting friendships) to kids who will be successful. These are the kids who often end up, due to peer pressure, wasting their teen years stoned and drunk, thus making the opportunity for college and a way out even more difficult.

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Those children who grow up "on the system" who are able to participate in scouts, mentoring programs, big brother big sisters, various afterschool programs, are less likely to repeat the cycle and turn it into a generational problem.

Good point, Abi, you remind us of those kids that do get exposed to the good. The programs that afford the child(ren) the opportunities for growth and expose them to kind adults who do it just because the want to. If we read bio's on some high exposure adults that were raised in bad situations they most often mention a program or an individual who taught them outside the home, who believed in them, where they learned what wasn't being shown them by example from the adults in their homes.

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