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Welfare Moms - Should we be supporting moms so they can stay at home with their children? - Page 24

post #461 of 792

Given the data that shows what happens when children from poverty are at least raised with a stable caregiver I am going to remain on the side where I'm glad we have a system to help people who need help. Even though there are people who take advantage of it. I'm not going to punish a whole lot of people who desperately need help because there are some @$$holes. Really, the idea that no one should get help unless everyone can be handed exactly the same amount and quantity of support is ridiculous. Not everyone needs the same level of help.

 

If you can work your rear off and survive then you are doing better than the people who could work just as hard and not survive. Saying they don't deserve help because they aren't working as hard as you is... well... uhm I'm going to stop there. And go argue on the other thread. Because I think that one is more directly related to why I'm annoyed right now.

 

In short: As someone who loses well over 1/3 of the household income to taxes before we start paying sales, property, etc taxes I say enthusiastically that yes welfare should allow moms to take care of their tiny children. Yes. Yes. Yes.

post #462 of 792
Quote:
Given the data that shows what happens when children from poverty are at least raised with a stable caregiver

other children also need a stable caregiver, the system was not designed to be what it has become and I would rather see all treated equally- those other are not less important and deserver the same

abuse will only make it more of a divide not less

post #463 of 792

erased an unhelpful comment


Edited by mammal_mama - 1/28/13 at 8:57am
post #464 of 792

If we withdraw support we will not be treating everyone equally. We will be saying that poor children should die.

post #465 of 792

Public schools are funded by the tax  payer, roads are funded by the tax payer-we should abolish them.

 

Children in some countries dont get enough to eat, they die of diseases because they are malnourished. All children should be subjected to the same fate, otherwise it is not fair....

 

This is your logic serenbat

post #466 of 792

What a painful, bitter place to choose to dwell  --in this tiny, cramped, strictly principled place.  Frankly it's selfish and more than a little elitist to refuse to consider that any one mom receiving benefits has good reason to do so, reason that you are not aware of.  YOU DO NOT KNOW.  What a luxury! That you can grasp your humanity so tightly to your body, not giving a drop away on FAITH. 

 

Considering your fellow mamas as a community, statistically speaking it's inevitable that some are going to game the system unfairly.  That's humanity.  Humans are flawed.   You know those 5,7 or however many days the utility company gives you to be late with the bill?  Interestingly enough, it's called a grace period. GRACE.  Be a mensch and provide your fellow mamas, as a whole community, some grace. It's good exercise for your heart and soul. 

post #467 of 792
Quote:
Originally Posted by serenbat View Post

 

when you make a "life style" choice that causes someone else to pay for it there tends to be resentment because others can not do this- again, does your child count more over someone else's? it's not equal that your "life style" choice should subject  others to pay for it but it is happening and many do not like paying for this- when people just go to the ER the cost goes up for others

 

 

My biggest problem with people judging others for their "life style" choice is that we only seem to judge the people on the bottom.

 

For example, the average food stamps in the U.S. for a family of four is approximately $520/month.  That means that family, though their "life style choice" costs the taxpayers just over $6000 per year.

 

Now, let's look at the other side instead.  How about a person who choses to take out a million dollar mortgage.  That certainly is a "life style choice." Now, interest rates are low now, but traditionally a 6% mortgage was considered good, so let's say because of the jumbo loan the interest rate was 7%.  That person would pay (and deduct) close to $70K of interest the first year of their loan.  In the 28% bracket, that would lead to a tax deduction of almost $20K and in the 35% bracket a tax deduction of almost $25K.

 

Those taxes have to be made up by everyone else.  We are, in effect, paying $20-25K for that.

 

But there is not a lot of complaining about that "life style choice."  Even though for each person who does that it costs 3-4 TIMES what it costs to put a family of four on food stamps for a year.

 

So, people complain less about subsidizing people in the top 5% than they do for people in the bottom 5%.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by captain optimism View Post

 

I think it's stupid because it's predicated on the idea that every person who suffers a misfortune must deserve it. People neither deserve to get sick because they didn't behave well enough to prevent it, nor do they deserve to have to choose between health insurance and other necessities because the insurance is too expensive. 

 

Or you know what? If they DO deserve to be sick or poor (or sick and poor) I don't give a cr@p. Public policy should be based on the idea that some people are going to be in trouble sometimes, and we as a whole society plan ahead to deal with that. You want to sit in your houses and feel superior to sick people or to people who can't afford health insurance, enjoy. 

 

thumb.gif

 

Additionally, a vast majority of people on food stamps are children, elderly or disabled.  Exactly what has a child done to not deserve food?  Clothes?  A bed?  Anyone who thinks the moral high ground in that situation is not giving people the basics has a seriously messed up sense of ethics.

post #468 of 792
Quote:
Originally Posted by kitteh View Post

 

It's not just that they find it to be better or preferable to not work, the sad reality is that some parents find that they absolutely cannot SURVIVE while working a minimum-wage (or even slightly above that) job.

 

This thread is really interesting, and one that hits home for me. My first child was a surprise and at first I thought it was such bad timing that I actually considered abortion because I wasn't sure we could afford her. How terrible and tragic is that? Looking back now I can't believe I ever entertained the idea, but that was my reality.

 

My husband is a Chilean immigrant and had just arrived in the US when I unexpectedly became pregnant (immediately!) He was not legally authorized to work, and I was just finishing up my last semester at UCLA and was working lunch shifts as a waitress. We were sharing a 2 bedroom apartment with an alcoholic relative of mine (certainly did not plan to bring a child into THAT living situation--we'd only intended to live there for a year until DH could find a job.) The first few months of my prenatal care were covered by my university insurance, but after I graduated (with $25k in student loans and another 25k in credit card debt!!) I was dropped from that insurance plan. Luckily the nurse-midwives over at UCLA accept Medi-Cal and urged me to apply. Since we were only living on my income, which was definitely less than 30k/year, I qualified for pregnancy-related Medi-Cal and WIC.

 

DH got a job through my workplace, but he was making minimum wage and wasn't given full-time hours. With no work history in the US that was the best he could get. I continued to waitress through my entire pregnancy. After the baby was born DH was able to find a much better job making $10/hr with a full-time schedule and I went back to waitressing. We knew we had to find our own place, but also knew that we would probably not be able to afford anything near our jobs, and we didn't own a car. Then one day I was fired out of the blue and went on unemployment. Around that time my DH heard about a non-profit organization in our area that offered affordable housing to moderate- and low-income people, so we applied.

 

I found a part-time job at an elementary school, but I only make $14/hour and I get less than 20 hours a week. I still receive partial unemployment, but won't for much longer as my claim runs out in March. It certainly isn't an ideal situation, but It works for us because I am able to be at home with my DD for most of the day. DH has also received a promotion and a small raise at his job. We still get WIC and still live in the subsidized housing. We both got insurance from DH's job, but DD is on Healthy Families. Earlier this year we decided to have another baby, and I am currently 18.5 weeks along. This one was totally planned, and we knew that doing so would mean continuing WIC. Sometimes I feel guilty for planning a pregnancy when we live in subsidized housing, but the truth is that this is a temporary lifestyle choice that we have made in order to parent/raise our children OURSELVES. Before we ever got married we talked about wanting two children, so the thought of just having one because of our current financial situation is not something we are willing to do. I do not see us staying in this tax-bracket forever, and I know that if we chose not to have another because of money, I would undoubtedly regret that decision down the road.

 

The way I see it, I want to have my kids close in age so that I can continue to work part-time while they are little. We make sacrifices so that is possible. We have no car. I cut DD and Dh's hair (and my own, sometimes!) We live in a tiny 1-bedroom apartment and plan to stay here until we are absolutely bursting at the seams. We don't take vacations (unless family members invite/pay for us to come visit.) We maintain a very tight budget and live frugally. Even so, we have managed to entirely pay off the credit card debt and a lot of the student loans, and now have thousands in savings.  Once both of our kids are in school, I plan to increase my hours and eventually start teaching full-time, and when that happens our financial situation will change significantly and I'm sure we will no longer qualify for WIC or the affordable housing that we currently have.

I'm sorry, but choosing to have another baby when you are receiving assistance just does not seem right to me. I understand you are living frugally but you are still getting money to support your family. Growing the family does not seem to be the best choice or the most responsible one. Many couples choose to wait to have another baby until they can afford it even if they would rather have them close in age. If you have thousands of dollars in savings, how do you still qualify for assistance? I guess I am not familiar enough with the system to understand that. I don't mean to be harsh but as a person who has worked at least part-time since I was 16 and never received assistance, your situation just rubs me the wrong way. I have no problem with people getting temporary assistance as long as they are bettering themselves and trying to get off of assistance. Having a baby when you know the result will be receiving assistance even longer is irresponsible.

post #469 of 792

The value of hard work and initiative and personal responsibility is tremendous Serenbat.  We all want others to try their best and do what we think they should...  I just don't think we need to leverage poverty-aleviation programs more than we already do to control people's behavior.

 

I'd like my actions to contribute to a society in which we all respect one another's efforts and make our sincere efforts.  It sounds like you really care about that too.  I just strongly believe that we do not build mutual respect by this kind of judgment of others, and to build true respect trusting others-- even if one person has a different way of weighing out the value of a SAHM to society.  I think picking apart exactly what one person assumes a SAHM contributes is unkind and likely to lead to unfairness.    

 

I value personal freedom to weigh out the benefits of something like outside employment vs. working in homemaking and make one's own decision.  Even when receiving benefits. 

 

Every story is different.  I do not know if you read my story of the time when I received benefits as a young mother.  Do you really think I did the wrong thing when I was at home with my children?  Was I making the "wrong" contributions?  Would anyone have really been better off if I'd put three children in day care, worked some crappy job, and done an even worse job at keeping things sanitary in a substandard house?  Not just me, not just my children, but also those taxpayers...  Who would have been better off?  And now 12 years later what would have developed from those compromises?  Who benefits from the kind of compromise you suggest I make? 

 

I think everyone benefits from a family creating the most stable environment they can during the early years.  The investment in social programs is worth it.  

 

You say you don't like it because you "have to" pay taxes and if only you were free to choose you would be contributing to private charities that would do an even better job.  I am skeptical.  I think such an approach would be inconsistent and even more inadequate.  I think most people would be even less likely to contribute significantly that they would be to follow through on a payment plan to pay for their own child's emergency room visit.  Safety nets HAVE to be reliable to work.  You have to KNOW they will be likely to be there when you need them, not just when the middle class is in the mood to pay.

 

I am sorry that your financial situation is frustrating you right now Serenbat.  I see why those working less would seem to be making your life harder.  I just think in the bigger picture it's better to assume that those people are making the right decisions for their family by applying their own ethics to their own situation while you figure out what is best for yours. 

 

Here's an analogy:  As a homeschooling parent I cannot imagine thinking that my tax dollars shouldn't help fund public schools.  If I were narrow-minded I might think that I am paying others' way while working hard to pay my own way by making all the commitments and sacrifices it takes to pay for my children's education out of pocket.  Why should I pay for other people's children's education and they are paying nothing toward my children?  I am working really, really hard on teaching my children and other parents get to let the teachers do the work while I pay.  That's unfair! 

 

But I do not make that protest.  I am better off living in a society with the results of our public education system than I would be if public schools didn't exist and every child only had access to what their own parents could privately fund. 

post #470 of 792
I think I'm starting to hate the internet. I need to step away from this thread.

greensad.gif
post #471 of 792
Quote:
 I need to step away from this thread.

 

because other have thousand of dollars in the bank and still getting WIC or the affordable housing?

 

yup nothing wrong ....it's only me

post #472 of 792

Is the problem fraud or just SAHMs serenbat as those are very different things? 

 

You can't have a lot of money and receive a lot of benefits without fraud.  The program guidelines are not extremely generous so if you are following them you will not have a lot of assets.  $2000 in savings is one single month of emergency funds in my household, half a month in some expensive locations, or a tiny down payment for a necessary basic car that may be the only way to get to work.  If you don't know the whole story you just don't know if someone is doing something wrong or not.

 

Anyway, I ask questions that don't get answered so I'll step out too. Peace.gif

post #473 of 792
Quote:
Originally Posted by journeymom View Post

What a painful, bitter place to choose to dwell  --in this tiny, cramped, strictly principled place.  Frankly it's selfish and more than a little elitist to refuse to consider that any one mom receiving benefits has good reason to do so, reason that you are not aware of.  YOU DO NOT KNOW.  What a luxury! That you can grasp your humanity so tightly to your body, not giving a drop away on FAITH. 

 

Considering your fellow mamas as a community, statistically speaking it's inevitable that some are going to game the system unfairly.  That's humanity.  Humans are flawed.   You know those 5,7 or however many days the utility company gives you to be late with the bill?  Interestingly enough, it's called a grace period. GRACE.  Be a mensch and provide your fellow mamas, as a whole community, some grace. It's good exercise for your heart and soul. 

 

Bravo!

post #474 of 792
Quote:
 Even so, we have managed to entirely pay off the credit card debt and a lot of the student loans, and now have thousands in savings.  Once both of our kids are in school, I plan to increase my hours and eventually start teaching full-time, and when that happens our financial situation will change significantly and I'm sure we will no longer qualify for WIC or the affordable housing that we currently have.

Is the problem fraud or just SAHMs serenbat as those are very different things? you didn't see the post? I had even made a prior comment and was jumped on for doing so.

 

please keep thinking it's all me

and other's aren't doing anything-

 

 

fraud is only fraud if you get caught - if you can make it work to your advantage all the better

post #475 of 792

I may have missed something in a previous post (it gets fast and confusing at times!) but would really appreciate you answering.  Truly.  Is the problem for you personally someone who is cheating/lying or is every SAHM who is following all of the rules and simply getting benefits based on her dh's income also a problem?  Is it okay to SAH if you are following the rules and being 100% honest?

 

I am personally fine with any measure that reduces fraud but I don't believe a SAHM who gets benefits needs to be forced to seek employment.  And if so, would it be ALL SAHMs or just those in certain situations?  I just want to know how much we agree and disagree at this point  smile.gif

 

(Also I think fraud exists as soon as someone is dishonest, not when they get caught.  Lying is a lie even if you don't get caught.  Theft is as well.)

post #476 of 792
Quote:
Originally Posted by journeymom View Post

Considering your fellow mamas as a community, statistically speaking it's inevitable that some are going to game the system unfairly.  That's humanity.  Humans are flawed.   You know those 5,7 or however many days the utility company gives you to be late with the bill?  Interestingly enough, it's called a grace period. GRACE.  Be a mensch and provide your fellow mamas, as a whole community, some grace. It's good exercise for your heart and soul. 

 

I couldn't agree with this more.

post #477 of 792
Quote:
Originally Posted by erinsmom1996 View Post

I'm sorry, but choosing to have another baby when you are receiving assistance just does not seem right to me. I understand you are living frugally but you are still getting money to support your family. Growing the family does not seem to be the best choice or the most responsible one. Many couples choose to wait to have another baby until they can afford it even if they would rather have them close in age. If you have thousands of dollars in savings, how do you still qualify for assistance? I guess I am not familiar enough with the system to understand that. I don't mean to be harsh but as a person who has worked at least part-time since I was 16 and never received assistance, your situation just rubs me the wrong way. I have no problem with people getting temporary assistance as long as they are bettering themselves and trying to get off of assistance. Having a baby when you know the result will be receiving assistance even longer is irresponsible.

 

erinsmom I totally see your point, it's definitely "questionable" but I would err on the side of trust again.  This mama has worked, is working, will be working again.  She's used public assistance as a partial support.  WIC is designed to give a nutrition boost to moms , many of whom are making enough money not to get food stamps--it's actually designed to allow more people to qualify since it is just a supplement. 

 

This family has two working parents and doesn't even own a car and has worked and worked to improve their situation.  Maybe you would not make her choice and she has mixed feelings too but in the long run she is planning arrangements that will make their future more and more self sufficient and building an emergency fund by being extremely frugal shouldn't evict her from her  housing if she still qualifies.  It's only lowered rent and some milk and cheese for goodness sake.  I am sure she is a good person and that if her choices aren't quite perfect, they're not imperfect enough for me to point fingers saying she is taking advantage of taxpayers.  She should continue to live her life, making these choices freely, with our blessing.

 

Ackkkk!  I let myself get sucked in again!  I wish all of you well and must leave this thread to do some real work now. 

post #478 of 792

I guess I don't see two to five years as temporary and not having to do with a life style/choice.

 

 

http://www.statisticbrain.com/welfare-statistics/

post #479 of 792
Quote:
Originally Posted by serenbat View Post

 

because other have thousand of dollars in the bank and still getting WIC or the affordable housing?

 

yup nothing wrong ....it's only me

 

WIC is based on income guidelines and does not take assets into consideration. Their income guidelines are generous enough ($35, 317 for a family of 3 and 42,643 for a family of 4. Counting a pregnant woman as two family members) that I highly doubt that anyone making near the high end of those limits is absolutely scraping by each month, relying on WIC to feed their family. WIC is a supplemental program, it only supplies $30-60/month worth of healthy foods. Perhaps you think it is wrong for my family to accept the WIC checks when we have money in our emergency savings account, but WIC doesn't think so or they would have asset limitations. Frankly, the only reason that we are able to put the money into savings is because we live so frugally and don't own a car. So the few hundred dollars that WOULD go towards a car payment/repairs/gas instead goes into a savings account.

 

Medi-Cal DOES have asset limitations--about $3,300 for a family of 4 I believe. However, if you have assets that exceed those limits, you are allowed to spend down your savings (or sell your property and then spend the profits) in order to dip below the limit. From the Dept of Healthcare Services website:

Your countable property must not exceed the property reserve limit. Any amount over the property reserve limit will make you and/or your family ineligible for Medi-Cal. To be eligible for Medi-Cal, you may reduce your property to the property reserve limit before the end of the month in which you are requesting Medi-Cal.

 

Also, we found our housing through a non-profit organization that helps families with low and moderate incomes find affordable housing. I think I might have falsely stated before that we live in Public Housing, but that was incorrect. The non-profit organization is privately owned, and it is not HUD or section 8 housing.

 

We do not receive any other assistance, and our family doesn't get money from TANF or food stamps or anything like that. Having another baby means we are going to get more WIC, sure. We will probably qualify for WIC for at least the first year of the new baby's life, because I can't work during the summer when baby comes. But right now we are hovering so close to the top limit for the WIC income guidelines that I doubt my family will qualify for much longer than that first year.

 

WIC is, by nature, a TEMPORARY program. Even if our income were stagnant and did not increase whatsoever, once our kids hit 5 we are no longer eligible. We will not be using the program for that long, as our income will go back up after the baby comes.

 

So, essentially, we HAVE used these programs as a temporary assistance to get us into a better position in which we will no longer qualify for anything. I'd say that for us the system has worked exactly as it is intended to work. We chose to have the baby NOW because doing so actually diminishes the amount of time that I will have to work part time, and accelerates our ability to get off all forms of aid. The alternative was to wait until I get a full-time job that is able to cover our expenses and infant childcare so that I could return to work right after having the next baby. I refuse to put my infant into daycare, and instead choose a lifestyle that involves part-time work, and lower pay, in order to raise my children myself. I suppose I can see how you might disagree with this choice, but I'm not breaking any laws or committing fraud by doing it. And the amount of assistance that my family receives is so small that, while I do feel a little conflicted about it, the fact is I am NOT gaming the system.


Edited by kitteh - 1/28/13 at 1:14pm
post #480 of 792
Quote:
Originally Posted by serenbat View Post

Is the problem fraud or just SAHMs serenbat as those are very different things? you didn't see the post? I had even made a prior comment and was jumped on for doing so.

 

please keep thinking it's all me

and other's aren't doing anything-

 

 

fraud is only fraud if you get caught - if you can make it work to your advantage all the better


I can't seem to get multi-quote to work, but as I pointed out in the above post, no fraud is being committed in my situation!

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