Some Movies Actually Understand Poverty in America

The complex realities of subsistence escape “Hillbilly Elegy.” But as far back as Charlie Chaplin’s “City Lights,” filmmakers have been turning a discerning eye on destitution.

#city-lights-song, #movies, #nomadland-movie, #poverty, #they-live-movie, #wendy-and-lucy-movie, #where-is-kyra-movie, #winters-bone-movie

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Chinese Statue to Goddess of Beauty Sparks Debate

As China fights to end extreme poverty while also recovering from the economic damage of the coronavirus, the supposed wisdom of building huge statues in poorer areas to grow tourism is coming under harsh scrutiny.

#china, #economic-conditions-and-trends, #local-government, #monuments-and-memorials-structures, #politics-and-government, #poverty

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Book Review: ‘Waste,’ by Catherine Coleman Flowers

Catherine Coleman Flowers’s memoir chronicles her advocacy for improved sanitation systems in rural America and her own education as an activist.

#books-and-literature, #equal-justice-initiative, #flowers-catherine-coleman, #poverty, #rural-areas, #waste-materials-and-disposal, #waste-one-womans-fight-against-americas-dirty-secret-book

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In Alabama, Poverty and the Coronavirus Are a Double Blow

Before she died of Covid-19, Pamela Rush opened her home to show the world what poverty looks like.

#alabama, #black-people, #income-inequality, #poor-peoples-campaign-coalition, #poverty, #race-and-ethnicity, #united-states

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‘Stand by Her’: In China, a Movement Hands Out Free Sanitary Pads in Schools

Students and teachers are placing pads outside bathrooms as part of a grass-roots campaign to fight period poverty and to remove the stigma surrounding menstruation.

#bathrooms-and-toilets, #china, #menstruation, #poverty, #sex-education, #women-and-girls

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How the Wealthy World Has Failed Poor Countries During the Pandemic

Despite pledges for debt relief and expanded programs, the World Bank and International Monetary Fund have delivered meager aid, say economists.

#banking-and-financial-institutions, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #georgieva-kristalina-ivanova, #group-of-twenty, #international-monetary-fund, #malpass-david, #mnuchin-steven-t, #poverty, #stimulus-economic, #third-world-and-developing-countries, #united-states-economy, #united-states-politics-and-government, #world-bank

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China Aims to End Extreme Poverty, but Covid-19 Exposes Gaps

The pandemic has worsened longstanding conditions that have widened inequality, hindering Xi Jinping’s vow to “leave no one behind.”

#china, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #politics-and-government, #poverty, #rural-areas, #xi-jinping

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In Election, Bolivia Confronts the Legacy of Its Ousted Socialist Leader

Sunday’s election is seen as a referendum on the 14-year political project of Evo Morales, a towering figure in Bolivian politics who lifted many out of poverty but whose policies and tone divided the country.

#arce-luis, #bolivia, #elections, #income-inequality, #mesa-carlos, #morales-evo, #poverty

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8 Million Have Slipped Into Poverty Since May as Federal Aid Has Dried Up

Two new studies show the effect of the emergency $2 trillion package known as the Cares Act and what happened when the money ran out.

#columbia-university, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #coronavirus-aid-relief-and-economic-security-act-2020, #poverty, #united-states-economy, #united-states-politics-and-government, #university-of-chicago, #university-of-notre-dame

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Pandemic Highlights Deep-Rooted Problems in Indian Health Service

Few hospital beds, lack of equipment, a shipment of body bags in response to a request for coronavirus tests: The agency providing health care to tribal communities struggled to meet the challenge.

#arizona, #centers-for-disease-control-and-prevention, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #deaths-fatalities, #disease-rates, #indian-health-service, #medicine-and-health, #native-americans, #navajo-indians, #new-mexico, #nez-jonathan, #poverty, #protective-clothing-and-gear, #shortages, #tests-medical, #united-states-politics-and-government

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In the Epicenter of Mexico’s Coronavirus Epicenter, Feeling Like a ‘Trapped Animal’

For the vast majority of people in one teeming neighborhood of Mexico City, risking illness or death has simply become the price of survival.

#coronavirus-2019-ncov, #deaths-fatalities, #income-inequality, #mexico, #mexico-city-mexico, #politics-and-government, #poverty

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As Schools Go Remote, Finding ‘Lost’ Students Gets Harder

Early data for the new school year suggests that attendance in virtual classrooms is down, possibly because students are working or caring for siblings.

#absenteeism-and-truancy, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #e-learning, #education-k-12, #parenting, #poverty, #teachers-and-school-employees

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A Cataclysm of Hunger, Disease and Illiteracy

A pandemic of suffering follows on the heels of Covid-19 in poor countries, and children suffer most.

#brac-bangladesh, #camfed, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #coronavirus-aid-relief-and-economic-security-act-2020, #food-insecurity, #illiteracy, #malnutrition, #poverty, #shutdowns-institutional, #third-world-and-developing-countries, #unemployment, #women-and-girls

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U.S. Poverty Hit a Record Low Before the Pandemic Recession

The share of Americans in poverty in 2019 declined and median incomes were the highest on record, a Census Bureau report showed.

#census, #census-bureau, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #health-insurance-and-managed-care, #income, #income-inequality, #labor-and-jobs, #poverty, #united-states-economy

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The Coronavirus Generation

The virus doesn’t sicken kids as much as adults. But it can still destroy their futures. A child allowance would help.

#anxiety-and-stress, #bennet-michael-farrand, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #education-k-12, #food-stamps, #poverty, #presidential-election-of-2020, #tax-cuts-and-jobs-act-2017, #united-states-economy, #united-states-politics-and-government, #welfare-us

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Who Holds the Key to a New America?

A historic low-income-voter turnout in 2020 would mean a victory for Democrats.

#endorsements, #politics-and-government, #poverty, #presidential-election-of-2020

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Poor and Desperate, Pakistani Hindus Accept Islam to Get By

Drawn by jobs or land offered by Muslim groups, some Hindus, facing discrimination and a virus-ravaged economy, are essentially converting to survive.

#caste-systems, #clergy, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #discrimination, #economic-conditions-and-trends, #freedom-of-religion, #hinduism, #minorities, #muslims-and-islam, #pakistan, #poverty

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In Argentina’s Debt Negotiations, a Kinder, Gentler Capitalism Faces a Test

BlackRock, the world’s largest asset management company, is opposing a debt settlement deal with Argentina as the country grapples with soaring poverty and the pandemic.

#argentina, #blackrock-inc, #business-roundtable, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #corporate-social-responsibility, #economic-conditions-and-trends, #fernandez-alberto-1959, #fink-laurence-d, #georgieva-kristalina-ivanova, #government-bonds, #gramercy-funds-management-llc, #international-monetary-fund, #macri-mauricio, #pensions-and-retirement-plans, #poverty, #stiglitz-joseph-e

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Coronavirus Forced Indian Workers on a Deadly Journey

Amrit and Saiyub were among the millions of Indian workers forced onto the road by the coronavirus lockdown. Nothing could shake their friendship in an unforgiving world.

#caste-systems, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #economic-conditions-and-trends, #india, #labor-and-jobs, #migrant-labor-non-agriculture, #modi-narendra, #poverty, #remittances

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How 2 New York Schools Became Models for Coping in a Pandemic

Vulnerable children need creative solutions, educators say: “The entire system has missed something if they don’t rethink what the fall semester looks like.”

#children-and-childhood, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #education-k-12, #manhattan-nyc, #mott-haven-bronx-ny, #mott-haven-academy-charter-school, #new-york-foundling-the, #parenting, #poverty, #quarantines, #shutdowns-institutional, #teachers-and-school-employees

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A Quarter of Bangladesh Is Flooded. Millions Have Lost Everything.

The country’s latest calamity illustrates a striking inequity of our time: The people least responsible for climate change are among those most hurt by its consequences.

#bangladesh, #brahmaputra-river-india, #cyclone-amphan, #dhaka-bangladesh, #floods, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #humanitarian-aid, #monsoons, #poverty

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Why Hunger Can Grow Even When Poverty Doesn’t

The two issues are linked, but during the coronavirus pandemic the relationship is not always simple.

#coronavirus-2019-ncov, #coronavirus-aid-relief-and-economic-security-act-2020, #federal-aid-us, #finances, #food, #food-banks-and-pantries, #food-insecurity, #food-stamps, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #income, #poverty, #recession-and-depression, #stimulus-economic, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-economy, #united-states-politics-and-government, #wages-and-salaries

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They Crossed Oceans to Lift Their Families Out of Poverty. Now, They Need Help.

As the pandemic destroys paychecks, migrant workers are sending less money home, threatening an increase in poverty from South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa to Eastern Europe and Latin America.

#bangladesh, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #foreign-workers, #guatemala, #labor-and-jobs, #migrant-labor-non-agriculture, #poverty, #remittances, #romania, #third-world-and-developing-countries

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A ‘Safety Net’ That’s a Kafkaesque Mess

The Supplemental Security Income program, on which millions of disabled Americans depend, is daunting by design.

#americans-with-disabilities-act, #disabilities, #poverty, #social-security-us

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New York City Has 2,300 Parks. But Poor Neighborhoods Lose Out.

Governors Island and other large parks are trying to attract more underserved visitors, who need outdoor space more than ever during the pandemic.

#benepe-adrian, #black-people, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #coronavirus-reopenings, #donoghue-sue, #governors-island-manhattan-ny, #income-inequality, #minorities, #new-york-city, #parks-and-other-recreation-areas, #playgrounds, #poverty

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Bartering Child’s Dress for Food: Life in Lebanon’s Economic Crisis

A TV chef abandons unaffordable beef. Blackouts make for sweltering summer nights. Changing money feels like a drug deal: The financial meltdown means daily pain and a blow to a country’s pride.

#antoine-el-hajj, #banking-and-financial-institutions, #barter, #beirut-lebanon, #cooking-and-cookbooks, #currency, #economic-conditions-and-trends, #lebanon, #politics-and-government, #poverty

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In Latin America, the Pandemic Threatens Equality Like Never Before

Over the past two decades, inequality in Latin America had fallen to the lowest point in its recorded history. The pandemic threatens to reverse that. We traveled 1,000 miles across Colombia to document this critical moment.

#bogota-colombia, #colombia, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #income-inequality, #inter-american-development-bank, #medellin-colombia, #poverty

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Black Families Were Hit Hard by the Pandemic. The Effects on Children May Be Lasting.

Setbacks in household wealth and the toxic stress of racism can have long-term effects, experts said.

#black-people, #children-and-childhood, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #discrimination, #families-and-family-life, #poverty, #race-and-ethnicity

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Coronavirus Is a Crisis. Might It Also Narrow Inequality?

Economic downturns have often led to political moves to lift the most vulnerable. But recoveries tend to reverse the effect.

#black-lives-matter-movement, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #emanuel-rahm, #federal-budget-us, #food-stamps, #george-floyd-protests-2020, #income-inequality, #poverty, #recession-and-depression, #united-states-economy, #united-states-politics-and-government, #welfare-us

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In Poor Countries, Many Covid-19 Patients Are Desperate for Oxygen

Aid agencies are scrambling to get oxygen equipment to low-income countries where the coronavirus is rapidly spreading.

#africa, #congo-democratic-republic-of-congo-kinshasa, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #gates-bill-and-melinda-foundation, #government-contracts-and-procurement, #hospitals, #latin-america, #lungs, #nigeria, #oxygen, #philanthropy, #poverty, #public-private-sector-cooperation, #rural-areas, #south-asia, #third-world-and-developing-countries, #unaids, #united-nations, #united-nations-childrens-fund, #ventilators-medical, #world-health-organization

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Vast Federal Aid Has Capped Rise in Poverty, Studies Find

But researchers caution this does not mean low-income families are escaping hardship. And they warn that when the aid expires next month, families could again be vulnerable.

#columbia-university, #coronavirus-aid-relief-and-economic-security-act-2020, #families-and-family-life, #federal-aid-us, #poverty, #unemployment, #unemployment-insurance, #united-states-economy, #united-states-politics-and-government

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From Policing to Climate Change, a Sweeping Call for a ‘Moral Revolution’

A coalition modeled after the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Poor People’s Campaign released an ambitious agenda to help the working poor fight systemic racism and inequality.

#discrimination, #george-floyd-protests-2020, #income-inequality, #minorities, #poor-peoples-campaign-coalition, #poverty

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Tech companies: It’s time to show that Black lives really matter to you

Over the past couple of weeks, in the wake of the protests over extrajudicial killings of Black people, tech companies have made tens of millions of dollars in commitments to racial equity organizations.

These commitments are a powerful signal of the moral heft of the protests and will certainly support these organizations in their vital work to advance change. But, as a biracial Black woman who has staked my career on making tech more equitable, I can’t help but feel cynical about the meaning of these commitments.

When I founded TechEquity four years ago, I set out to engage the tech community in advocacy work to address the structural inequities that make the tech industry a driver of inequality, rather than broad-based opportunity. We have had more success than I could have imagined in getting tech workers to use their privilege to further that goal. Just last year, for example, our tech workers used their civic power to help pass the biggest expansion of tenant protections in America.

But convincing tech companies to step up has been a different story; they have largely opted to stay on the sidelines. Here are a few examples.

Property tax reform

For more than two years, TechEquity has been part of a coalition working to fix a gaping loophole in California’s tax code that allows corporations to avoid paying property taxes. This loophole has caused California’s school system and local governments to be massively underfunded for the last four decades, resulting in a steep decline in public education quality and social services that disproportionately impacts Black and brown communities. It also disadvantages new and forward-looking companies, like those in the tech industry, by giving a tax advantage to older corporations.

I thought that supporting the ballot initiative to close this loophole would be a no-brainer for the tech industry. I even wrote an op-ed making a very clear case why this should be tech’s issue. But so far only one tech company, Postmates, has endorsed it.

Empty promises for housing

Last year Google, Apple and Facebook made high-profile announcements that they were making a collective $4.5B commitment to solving the Bay Area’s housing crisis. Reading the fine print, it was clear that the majority of the contributions came in the form of land that wasn’t zoned for housing production. Anyone who knows anything about housing in California knows how hard it is to build housing on land where it’s already legal, let alone to change the zoning code. Without complementary investments in a political strategy to change zoning laws, this makes the majority of their massive contributions effectively meaningless.

But, as people are increasingly being pushed out of their homes and onto the streets, with homelessness disproportionately affecting Black people, these companies have made an active decision not to invest in the political and power-building work that is required to actually solve the housing crisis — even when doing so would cost significantly less than $4.5B. Stripe has made a $1M contribution to California YIMBY, a group advocating for more housing production, but it stands conspicuously alone in funding housing policy advocacy work.

Sustainable funding for homeless housing and services

In 2018, voters in San Francisco approved a measure that would increase taxes on high-grossing companies based in the city in order to pay for homelessness services and affordable housing. Because of the same arcane law that created the property tax loophole described above, the city isn’t allowed to spend the money it collects until a court case is resolved — something that could take up to seven years.

Meanwhile, there is a way for companies to allow the city to use the tax dollars they’re already paying in order to address a homelessness crisis that continues to worsen. Two companies, Salesforce and Postmates, have given the city permission to spend these funds. But many others have chosen not to follow suit.

These are just a few examples, and I haven’t even touched on the persistent lack of diversity at tech companies and the industry’s unwillingness to truly address it.

More often than not, when advocates invite tech companies to do the things that would really move the needle on equity issues, they decline to participate. We’re told it is because they just don’t think it’s appropriate to get involved in politics. They’re worried about taking a position that might draw negative attention. They don’t want to alienate policymakers or constituencies who might disagree with their stances. It’s easier to just stay out of it.

But silence is complicity. As we have learned over the last five years, almost everything tech companies do is political, whether they like it or not. It’s time for them to pull their heads out of the sand and use their power to support true racial and economic equity.

What would this look like? Tech companies could:

Throw their weight behind equitable legislation

We’ve seen how powerful it is to demonstrate tech worker support for equitable policy solutions. Tech companies can publicly endorse legislation that will improve economic resiliency for underresourced communities and potentially make the difference in whether they get passed.

Fund advocacy work

Many of the organizations doing the best work on advancing change are working with one hand tied behind their back because restrictions on their funding make it hard for them to do advocacy work. Tech companies, unlike many other institutional philanthropy organizations, don’t have legal restrictions on funding advocacy. They can and should allow grantees to spend money to advance structural change through policy advocacy.

Focus on diversity at the executive level. The people who make these decisions on behalf of tech companies are in the executive suite — and they are overwhelmingly white. Adding people with more diverse backgrounds at the executive level can add different perspectives that can lead to more meaningful engagement on equity issues. We have found that a prerequisite to any company taking political positions is that there is executive buy-in.

When the executive team is diverse, they are more likely to see the need for the company to take a stand on these issues. It’s time to be honest about what the tech industry can do to truly invest in racial equity — and to hold companies accountable when they don’t.

#articles, #column, #diversity, #equity, #housing, #opinion, #philanthropy, #policy, #poverty, #racism, #tc, #techequity

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China’s Push to Empower Street Vendors for ‘Stall Economy’ Ignites Debate

The premier’s suggestion to empower a “stall economy” and focus on low-income workers leads some to ask whether the world’s No. 2 economy is as prosperous as it seems.

#china, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #economic-conditions-and-trends, #entrepreneurship, #labor-and-jobs, #li-keqiang, #poverty, #street-vendors-non-food, #unemployment

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As a Federal Coronavirus Expert Frets, the Capital Moves to Reopen

Like many areas around the country, Washington and its suburbs are embracing positive momentum in data on infections to push ahead.

#birx-deborah-l, #black-people, #bowser-muriel-e, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #coronavirus-reopenings, #hogan-lawrence-j, #maryland, #montgomery-county-md, #northam-ralph-s, #poverty, #prince-georges-county-md, #suburbs, #united-states-politics-and-government, #virginia, #washington-dc

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‘It’s the Death Towers’: How the Bronx Became New York’s Virus Hot Spot

The borough has the city’s highest rates of virus cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Could more have been done?

#bronx-nyc, #columbia-university, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #deaths-fatalities, #diaz-ruben-jr, #mailman-school-of-public-health, #new-york-university, #poverty, #protective-clothing-and-gear, #race-and-ethnicity, #shutdowns-institutional

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Coronavirus and the Paradox of Essential Work

How the coronavirus reveals the paradox of necessary, undervalued work.

#children-and-childhood, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #domestic-violence, #poverty, #pregnancy-and-childbirth, #religion-and-belief, #roman-catholic-church, #women-and-girls

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The American Dream Is Alive and Well

We have bigger issues than inequality.

#federal-taxes-us, #income, #income-inequality, #income-tax, #labor-and-jobs, #poverty, #united-states-economy, #wages-and-salaries

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The Coronavirus and The Cities We Need

Crises can be clarifying.

#black-people, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #discrimination, #education, #hispanic-americans, #income-inequality, #minorities, #new-york-city, #poverty, #race-and-ethnicity, #segregation-and-desegregation, #united-states, #urban-areas, #zoning

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The Making of Marcus Rashford

The Manchester United star has put his shoulder behind an effort to make sure children don’t go hungry during lockdown. He’s doing it, he says, because he knows the feeling.

#children-and-childhood, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #fareshare-great-britain, #great-britain, #manchester-united-soccer-team, #philanthropy, #poverty, #rashford-marcus-1997, #soccer

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Fulfilling the Promise of Our Cities in This Time of Coronavirus

It’s a dark hour for America’s cities, but they’re critical to building a better nation.

#central-park-manhattan-ny, #income-inequality, #new-york-city, #poverty, #real-estate-and-housing-residential, #urban-areas

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The Cities We Need

America’s cities were once engines of growth and opportunity. In this crisis, how can we save them?

#discrimination, #education, #income-inequality, #king-martin-luther-jr, #new-york-city, #poverty, #race-and-ethnicity, #san-francisco-calif, #segregation-and-desegregation, #urban-areas, #zoning

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Lebanon’s Economic Crisis Explodes, Threatening Decades of Prosperity

Bad planning, corruption and the sudden shock of a pandemic have caused the Lebanese currency to crash and consumer prices to jump. Hunger looms.

#american-university-of-beirut, #beirut-lebanon, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #currency, #economic-conditions-and-trends, #lebanon, #poverty

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As Hunger Swells, Food Stamps Become a Partisan Flash Point

Democrats are seeking to raise benefits as research shows a rise in food insecurity without modern precedent amid the pandemic. But Republicans have balked at a long-term expansion of the program.

#children-and-childhood, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #democratic-party, #diet-and-nutrition, #food, #food-stamps, #house-of-representatives, #poverty, #republican-party, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-economy, #united-states-politics-and-government, #welfare-us

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Money for Welfare Instead Funded Concerts, Lobbyists and Football Games, Audit Finds

According to a state audit, Mississippi allowed tens of millions of dollars in federal anti-poverty funds to be used in ways that did little or nothing to help the poor.

#davis-john-mississippi-department-of-human-services, #dibiase-brett, #embezzlement, #mississippi, #new-nancy, #nonprofit-organizations, #politics-and-government, #poverty, #reeves-tate-1974, #welfare-us

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Millions Had Risen Out of Poverty. Coronavirus Is Pulling Them Back.

Experts say that for the first time since 1998, global poverty will increase. At least a half a billion people could slip into destitution by the end of the year.

#africa, #banerjee-abhijit, #bangladesh, #coronavirus-aid-relief-and-economic-security-act-2020, #economic-conditions-and-trends, #food, #food-aid, #harvard-university, #income-inequality, #india, #international-monetary-fund, #labor-and-jobs, #layoffs-and-job-reductions, #massachusetts-institute-of-technology, #poverty, #recession-and-depression, #remittances, #south-asia, #third-world-and-developing-countries, #unemployment, #united-nations, #world-bank

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Here’s How You Can Help People During the Coronavirus

These causes will make great use of your money or your time.

#coronavirus-2019-ncov, #hygiene-and-cleanliness, #medical-devices, #native-americans, #philanthropy, #poverty, #refugees-and-displaced-persons, #shortages, #third-world-and-developing-countries, #water

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Does New York Survive the Coronavirus?

A conversation with The Times’s Big City columnist, Ginia Bellafante.

#brooklyn-nyc, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #economic-conditions-and-trends, #epidemics, #gentrification, #hurricane-sandy-2012, #joyce-joe-1945-2020, #labor-and-jobs, #new-york-city, #poverty, #quarantines, #real-estate-and-housing-residential, #recession-and-depression, #september-11-2001, #trump-donald-j

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This Pandemic Is Bringing Another With It

More suffering is ahead for the developing world.

#children-and-childhood, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #epidemics, #hygiene-and-cleanliness, #medical-devices, #poverty, #quarantines, #shortages, #shutdowns-institutional, #third-world-and-developing-countries, #world-bank, #world-food-program

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For Southern Italy, the Coronavirus Becomes a War on 2 Fronts

As it confronts the ravages of the virus, Italy’s less developed south also faces economic carnage not seen since just after World War II, with the poor turning to handouts.

#ndrangheta, #camorra, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #economic-conditions-and-trends, #hospitals, #income-inequality, #italy, #organized-crime, #politics-and-government, #poverty, #quarantines, #unemployment

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