Target: Mr. Sam Brownback, Governor of Kansas
Goal: Don’t place unfair restrictions on people receiving welfare benefits in Kansas.
People receiving welfare assistance in the state of Kansas may soon lose some basic privileges that make life in poverty slightly more bearable. Both houses of the Kansas State Legislature have passed a bill that would place a slew of new restrictions on what individuals and families on welfare can spend their money on, from movie tickets to swimming pools. This ridiculous piece of legislation is extremely restrictive and will place undue stress on people trying to sort out their lives. We must tell Governor Brownback that this bill is flawed and many parts of it must be changed before it can be passed into law.
The bill in question definitely has solid intentions. We can all agree that people receiving welfare assistance from the state should be spending that extra money on things they need to survive like rent, medical expenses, and transportation. However, stopping someone from visiting a swimming pool or from attending a movie is just mean spirited.
Beyond these restrictive measures is another more practical concern: the bill only allows welfare recipients to withdraw $25 a day in cash from ATMs. How on earth is someone supposed to subsist on $25 in cash a day without credit or a debit card linked to a bank account? Many people have these things, but many do not. Do lawmakers in Arkansas expect people to visit the ATM daily to withdraw $25 and save up the remainders in order to pay for larger expenses?
This plan, which arguably has good intentions, is fundamentally flawed and must be seriously revised before it is passed into law. Please sign here to demand that everyone in Kansas is treated fairly and that this bill does not pass as it is currently written.
Dear Governor Brownback,
I am writing today on behalf of every welfare recipient in your state. There is a bill sitting on your desk right now which would place harsh restrictions on families and individuals receiving welfare benefits in your state. I am writing to urge you not to sign this bill into law.
I understand that this bill has the best of intentions at heart, but sadly, its passage would only place undue stress on people who are already buried under it. Taking away the few pleasures that those facing abject poverty have, such as attending movies or visiting swimming pools on hot days, would only serve to make them feel like second-class citizens.
Beyond this, not allowing people to withdraw more than $25 a day is downright counterproductive. Are welfare recipients meant to take daily trips to ATM machines to get their daily allowance? How do you suggest they get there? Driving would cost them money for gas and even taking public transportation would add up when time lost is factored in.
This bill does not work as it is written. I understand the urge to stop people from gambling with state money, even though that money would just go back to the state, but please rework this bill to ensure that no person is treated as less than they are.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Shaggythesailor via Wikimedia Commons