Minimum Wage: The War on Poverty

First, let me apologize for my absence. I’ve been dealing with a lot of issues in my personal life. Struggling to deal with work, a single mother, my grandfather passed, my family fell (not is falling already broke) apart and the stress was just weighing down on me. Having said that, allow me to get back to my natural element of writing.

Today we are back discussing a topic that everyone has an opinion on. This is a very important topic. I write this, not only as a concerned citizen, but as a single mother who is definitely specified under the conditions of poverty for help.

Poor families by family type

Poor families by family type

According to the standards of living in Indianapolis, I should be able to pay $200 a week ($800 a month) for childcare, $575 a month for a 2-bedroom apartment, be able to pay electric and/or gas and have reliable transportation…. My annual income, even though I started in the middle of February and work less than 40 hours, should be $14,490. So a 1 year lease would run $6900, daycare would run $9600, and let’s say that gas and/or electric runs an average of $150 a month- $1800. Before an extras such as cable (a non necessity), a phone (a necessity), transportation (a necessity) and food (A NECESSITY), I’m already in the whole $3810 for the year. SO my argument for people who say “get a better job:they aren’t always available, they aren’t always looking for me and not working is NOT an option. Minimum wage is NOT a working wage. I make $9 an hour. I was recently approved for Indiana Health Plan (state funded) in which I only owe $329 for the year.

Poverty status for native born citizens

Poverty status for native born citizens

Poverty by foreign-born citizens

Poverty by foreign-born citizens

I’ve gathered some fun facts and graphs from various government websites to prove my point. I’m not just talking out the side of my mouth.

According to a study done by the University of Wisconsin and poverty information for 2012, I’m at the poverty level for 2 people. A two family household should have combined income of $14,937.

According to another study done by Poverty Guidelines , bot my child and I qualify for Medicaid. Unfortunately, in the State of Indiana, I do not qualify but my child does. So I am paying for healthcare but am forced to seek dental and vision coverage. Mind you, I’m already $3810 in the whole for the year.

So before you begin to tell someone that they aren’t trying hard enough or that they are living above their means, make sure investigate the cost of living and compare what they make to what they need for basic survival. Necessities are food, clothing and shelter. Privileges are bonus things like cable, vehicles, etc. I’ve provided some graphs to help everyone visualize the importance and stronghold that poverty has on us.

Breakdown of poor married-couple by work experience

Breakdown of poor married-couple by work experience

*all graphs and information on the graphs provided by http://www.city-data.com/poverty/poverty-Indianapolis-Indiana.html*