How Will Candidates Make Work Possible for DC Residents?
Yesterday the focus of the District’s mayoral campaign turned to jobs, with the release of Vince Gray’s economic development plan and the Fenty administration’s awarding of federal stimulus dollars for job training.
How we get our neighbors back to work in jobs that pay liveable wages shouldn’t be a one day news story, however. We hope that Chairman Gray and Mayor Fenty, as well as the candidates for Council Chairman, at-large council, and the ward seats, will make this a focal point of debate in these last six weeks before the primary election.
Looking at unemployment statistics tells only part of the story. Nearly one in five DC residents live in poverty, and one in three children. One-fifth of all working DC residents earn less than $11 an hour – a wage that is barely enough to lift a family of four above the federal poverty line. Poverty and economic opportunity are linked. That’s why more than 100 local businesses and organizations, as well as 3,000 residents have signed on to the Defeat Poverty DC campaign.
Defeat Poverty considers “Making Work Possible” the first and most important step in addressing our city’s historic poverty rate. Check out Defeat Poverty’s press release on the Gray plan here.