A National Resource to Support Excellence in Community Action

The Basic Economic Security Tables

Community Action Association of Alabama

Releases BEST Report

CLICK HERE for full report


BEST- Basic Economic Security Tables is an income sufficiency standard that includes asset building components for various family configurations at a local geographic level.  The BEST index measures the income required for workers to make ends meet and save.  It quantifies the value of employment-based benefits, it is a de facto definition of good incomes and good jobs, a starting point for the policymakers, advocates, researchers and service providers who help build stability.

Op-Ed and News Coverage on BEST

An excellent op-ed piece written by Ron Gilbert, CAA Alabama Executive Director, was published in the Montgomery Advertiser to bring attention to the report and to urge public support for initiatives supporting basic economic security - see Alabama Voices: Income targets pose major challenge.

National BEST Intiative - Wider Opportunities for Women

Alabama BEST was published as part of the Economic Security Institute developed by Wider Opportunities for Women.

The BEST follows on a long history of research defining families’ spending and income needs, but reflects a modern economy and contemporary understanding of how families achieve financial stability. The BEST addresses the several pieces of the larger basic economic security picture—basic needs, savings and employment-based benefits—and allows a broad and complete view of worker needs and families’ prospects for achieving the economic security so critical to their futures and to their communities.

BEST values have been calculated for the United States and six state and regions to assist policymakers, researchers, advocates and media who assess the status of the nation’s workers, the needs of America’s families, and the state of the nation—today and in coming years. The US BEST also serves as benchmark for state and county BEST Indexes and provides context for state and local policy discussions. BEST data increases awareness of the challenges faced by hard working American families and points to important policies and jobs that allow these families to build and achieve economic security.


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