In Your Words: Critical Perspective

Identifying, in a concrete way, with struggling families is an important exercise for any
leader. By walking in the shoes of those who depend on the SNAP program, I certainly feel like I’ve gained critical perspective as a policymaker.  From a broader perspective, I’m starting to think about all the other challenges families on food stamps (SNAP) must face at the same time they are stretching their food benefit. Census data in 2010  howed Arizona had the second highest poverty rate in the nation with 21.2% of its citizens living in poverty. The national figure was 14.3 percent. We’ve improved since then, but we’re still in the 10-poorest states category.  Worse, women raising children
alone here aren’t doing well.  More than 45% of mothers raising children by themselves are in poverty.  That’s why turning this economy around is so important.  The best “program” for any struggling family is a job that pays a living wage.  That’s what I’m focusing on for every Phoenix family.

- Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton

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