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JustAnotherGen

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Gender: Female
Hometown: Western NY
Home country: US
Current location: Central NJ
Member since: Sat Aug 25, 2007, 01:21 PM
Number of posts: 14,042

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NJ's Hidden Poor

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2012/09/new_report_puts_a_harrowing_fa.html

Not a big fan of the Ledger - but read this yesterday. Highlights the Food Bank my husband and I volunteer at . . . We live in Bridgewater/Somerville. We "know" because of our efforts - but this rips off the Band Aid of those efforts.

HIGH COST OF LIVING
In a state with one of the highest levels for cost of living and lowest minimum wage (the federal minimum of $7.25 an hour), half of all jobs pay less than $20 an hour.

That’s not enough, says Joe Kunzmann, Somerset County Social Services director, who estimates a person living in New Jersey needs to make at least $25 an hour for a fair market rent apartment in Somerset County. Because Somerset is ranked among the top-10 wealthiest counties in the United States, according to Forbes magazine, its relative affluence drives up the cost of living for everyone. The Household Survival Budget for Somerset, as calculated by Hoopes Halpin, is $66,160 for a family of four.

"It makes it kind of harder for people that are just at the poverty level or above it to get by," Kunzman said. There’s this margin of error that is very slight. … If you’re making $12 an hour or $15 an hour and your car breaks down and you have to have it fixed and you need it to get to work, what do you pay? Do you have your car fixed or do you maybe not pay all your rent or do you skimp on your Public Service bill? A lot of people that we are seeing are people like that."


To follow DU rules - I selected as few paragraphs as possible. Good read when you dive into it on the working poor who are falling through the cracks.

Posted by JustAnotherGen | Mon Sep 3, 2012, 09:23 AM (0 replies)
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