Tags: Better | Way | fight | poverty | GOP | Address

Rep. Byrne: There is a Better Way to Fight Poverty

(AP)

By    |   Saturday, 03 Sep 2016 09:09 AM

The "present jumble" of programs set up to help lift people out of poverty could better serve needs if they were combined into just a few, Rep. Bradley Byrne said in Saturday's GOP address, outlining a portion of the House Republicans' #BetterWay initiative.

"On this Labor Day weekend, we should recognize that every person struggling wants to get a job and make enough money to live a good life," the Alabama Republican said.

Byrne commented that he has been touring his district over the past few months, talking with many people trapped in poverty.

"Some are struggling with addiction," he said. "Some have no homes. Some have jobs that simply don't pay enough. They come from all kinds of backgrounds. And none of them want to stay in poverty."

Private non-profit organizations have shown to be doing some of the best work with the poor, said Byrne, speaking Saturday from one of the groups, Feeding the Gulf Coast.

"They have a real concern for the people they help here," said Byrne."They treat those in need as human beings with real worth and openly prove to people that they are loved."

The government can't love someone, he continued, but it can learn from private groups about what really works and make sure it supports their efforts.

Meanwhile, federal programs set up to help the poor are instead leaving them in poverty, said Byrne.

"We’ve spent trillions of dollars over the last 50 years on the so-called "War on Poverty" — $800 billion this year alone," he stated. And yet during that time the percentage of our people living in poverty has hardly changed."

But, there is a better way, and that includes combining the programs into a few that can meet people's needs.

"These programs should make sure every adult who can work has the education and skills to find a good-paying job in the 21st century economy," said Byrne, noting House Republicans have five steps to make that happen:

  • Reward work. If you are capable, we will expect you to work or prepare for work in exchange for benefits.
  • Tailor those benefits to people's needs. If we allow states to customize benefits, then they’ll be able to work with groups like Feeding the Gulf Coast and get people the help they need.
  • Improve education and job training.
  • Help people plan and save for the future.
  • Demand results. Keep track of what we’re doing, so that we can see which ideas actually work.

If the ideas succeed, people will be lifted out of poverty, the economy will grow, and less taxpayer money will be spent as people leave the welfare rolls, Byrne said.

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The present jumble of programs set up to help lift people out of poverty could better serve needs if they were combined into just a few, Rep. Bradley Byrne said in Saturday's GOP address, outlining a portion of the House Republicans' #BetterWay initiative.
Better, Way, fight, poverty, GOP, Address
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2016-09-03
Saturday, 03 Sep 2016 09:09 AM
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