Posted 5 years ago on March 3, 2012, 3:49 a.m. EST by chell4
from Hornstein, Bgld.
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
It seems that there are many, many misconceptions about social safety net programs. The idea that there are 'career' welfare recipients, the myth of the 'welfare queen' from decades ago, the suggestion that people who receive benefits do not pay taxes: there are so many fallacies. Where does a person go to de-bunk such information? It takes work to do so, or experience in one's own life. So often, i hear people say how they knew someone who misused/abused the system, as it were. i often want to ask: what do you mean you KNEW or KNOW them? Are they a part of your life? A friend or family member? Or is this the typical i know someone who knows someone, read it somewhere, got it in an e-mail bomb..
A few things that are interesting about being American in Austria: There are no 'projects' here, as all housing, other than private, is public housing. i live in a city of government 'projects,' along with almost 2 million other people. Welfare is a treated as a right here. Families with children receive a child allowance every month until their child is 18. There are numerous programs to help the poor, and while any system is far from perfect, it seems to be the public concensus that paying for people who take advantage of the system is preferrable to having one individual with need go without help. i can say i know this personally, because being 'american' i tend to talk to people i do know, and people that i don't know, about such issues, (from all walks of life..from my doctor to my boss to my family members to people on the tram, bus, train, subway etc.) Workers rights exist, although they are currently being trampled on..though much less so than across the ocean. Still..here people are entitled to 5 weeks of paid vacation, paid sick days, and insurance is a given, with all services covered. Any time i bring up this issue in regard to the debate about health insurance in America, people are dumbfounded. i suppose this post is a rant..because i spent decades in the country of my birth, living on the fringes as a poor person. As a former welfare queen, i can say that the crown weighed quite heavy until i left..granted it is always sacrifice to leave home..my children, my grandchildren, friends..but for now, i am at least afforded the dignity of a fair wage, living standards and healthcare.
Here are a couple of links about some recent developments in regard to the so-called 'welfare state' of America. (It doesn't exist btw..never has.) The first is Brion McClanahan's vision of the future for welfare recipients and the second is a C-Span talk/call-in with Elizabeth Lower-Bosch. A couple of final thoughts just to dispel some mythology: Illegal immigrants have never been entitled to welfare benefits; whether food stamps or cash. Only certain health-related assistance. Any barriers to ensuring this were removed back in 1996 with the Personal Responsibility and Work Reconcialiation Act. It is not, nor has it ever been possible to be a 'career' welfare recipient. The lifetime limit has been 60 months for almost 30 years. i think we can all agree that 5 years does not constitute a lifetime..hell, in a job, we are just getting comfortable at that mark! Imagine a journeyman electrician or a nurse, or any other professional saying they have been at their work for a lifetime under such conditions! Getting welfare means, (in many states,) you and your children get fingerprinted, you have to produce documentation that most people do not have readily available, you must 'check-in' every 3 months for eligibility reconsideration, and if cash assistance is given, you must volunteer your time at least 30 hours a week..and that was BEFORE reform! It is even stricter now. Anyway..thanks for listening. Hopefully i do not have to recreate me yet again if there are comments here..have had a problem that i know is not censorship in any way..but the page fails for me and i have to become another derivative of me, chell. http://preliatorcausa.blogspot.com/2012/02/welfare-recipients-are-slaves-to.html