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October 31st Newsletter – MASSCAP

Massachusetts Association for Community Action

Road to Opportunity: Finding the Way Forward

MASSCAP Newsletter – October 31, 2018
See newsletter for full story on each of these items

DID YOU KNOW: Poverty is a story of low wage work

  • Wages for low wage workers have barely grown over last 20 years while incomes for the top 1% have more than tripled.
  • Most low-income families (2/3 of those in poverty) include a working adult.
  • High cost of housing combined with transportation challenges in some parts of the state make it harder to earn a living wage.
  • Lack of affordable transportation makes it hard to get to work as well as meet basic needs (food, healthcare).

More information and access the data: Obstacles on the Road to Opportunity: Finding a Way Forward, May 2018

POLICY MATTERS: Addressing Transportation Challenges

Some ideas for addressing transportation challenges came out of our forum on poverty and finding the way forward in the Pioneer Valley:

  • Expand public transit system including commuter rail
  • Diversify transportation options – Don't rely on large buses.  Develop a fleet of smaller vehicles.
  • Provide resources to cover purchasing or repairing personal vehicles
  • Encourage expansion of ride service providers and small transport companies

The combined cost of housing and transportation along with low average incomes make for unique circumstances across the Pioneer Valley – explore more data.

Transportation is a social determinant of health – Access to work, school, grocery store, healthcare, etc. are critical for healthy living.

Visit Transportation for Mass for more information.

MAKING A DIFFERENCE: Making Our Voices Heard

How can we take action?
The word cloud is result of asking those who attended our forum last week in Springfield for one word that describes how you can help in the fight against poverty.   We can all take action!

  • Vote
  • Work Together
  • Listen to those we serve
  • Encourage Census Participation
  • Focus on local and regional issues


Next MASSCAP newsletter will focus on how CAA's support health and address the social determinants of health.

Next Forum on Poverty and the Way Forward
To be held in the Berkshires, Jan. 11


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