Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Slate Magazine: Reihan Salam: NYC Mayor Bill De Blasio's Welfare Mistake


I guess the Socialist has arrived in New York City to be their mayor in Bill De Blasio. In saying that people on Welfare there need not to go to work or be actively seeking work in order to receive their public assistance. I’m saying this half-jokingly and I agree with the Mayor that education and job training are important when it comes to people in Welfare who are low-skilled. But not as a replacement to working and looking for work. Because work experience especially people with paper-thin resumes even if they have a resume is a form of job training. 
The fact is we need all of these things when it comes to Welfare and moving people out of poverty which is what the 1996 Welfare to Work law is about. Moving people from Welfare to the fast food industry or working in other areas of the food service business and making minimum wage is not a success. Because they’ll still be on public assistance as it relates to public housing, food assistance and Medicaid. 
And saying to people on Welfare that they “can continue to collect their Welfare and not need to bother to even look for work let alone go to work. And maybe we’ll make educational and job training opportunities available to you. But that won’t be required either because we really just want to take care of people on Welfare. And less interested in moving people off of Welfare”. That doesn’t work either for obvious reasons and the key reason why Welfare was reformed in 1996. 
The goal of Welfare and public assistance in general is to move people off of public assistance and in to good jobs so they no longer need public assistance at all. That comes from a combination of education and work experience and this can be done at the same time as people on Welfare are improving their skills with a low-end job and improving their skills so they can get themselves a good job. 
Welfare to the middle class should be the goal of Welfare. Not Welfare to more Welfare. Or Welfare to independent poverty with no assistance for people to improve their lives.  

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