News

Anti-Poverty Task Force Update

The Anti-Poverty Task Force has focused on 3 strategies to fight poverty in Kalamazoo County. Here are the updates on our progress on these strategies.

  1. Create jobs – Our task force will continue to support and raise awareness about Momentum’s job training programs and companies in the Employers Resource Network who provide jobs for Momentum graduates: uainc.org/momentum-urban-employment-initiative
  2. Raise the minimum wage in Michigan –The task force helped One Fair Wage collect signatures to get the minimum wage increase on the ballot for the November 2018 election. However, the legislature created a minimum wage increase bill in September to be approved by the legislature and the Governor, instead of putting it on the ballot. Before leaving office, Governor Snyder signed the bill that increases the minimum wage from $9.25 in 2018 to $12 by 2030. This is a twenty-three cent increase each year in the minimum wage and is much slower than the minimum wage increase the One Fair Wage supporters proposed.
  3. Change state policies to extend benefits for working people who need state assistance to maintain their jobs. The task force will meet with state representative Jon Hoadley to find out how we can support him in proposing a study to determine which state benefit programs can provide a gradual release when a person becomes employed.

– Regena Nelson, Anti-Poverty Task Force co-chair with Nicholas Baxter