Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Media Advisory: Income needs of Pennsylvania working families continue to increase

EMBARGOED UNTIL 12 AM May 20

Income needs of Pennsylvania working families continue to increase
Latest edition of Self-Sufficiency Standard finds costs growing even as incomes do not

On Tuesday, May 18, 2010, at 4:00 PM, reporters will have the opportunity to call a dedicated phone line to interview leaders from PathWays PA and the report’s author. Contact Marianne Bellesorte, Director of Policy, 610-543-5022 x209 or mbellesorte@pathwayspa.org if you wish to participate in the virtual press conference. You must register to get the press conference phone number.

WHAT: Release of statewide report on the financial condition of Pennsylvania working families:
Self-Sufficiency Standard for Pennsylvania 2010-2011


HARRISBURG – From food to transportation, it costs Pennsylvania’s working families more to adequately meet the rising costs of living, according to the latest edition of the Self-Sufficiency Standard for Pennsylvania 2010-2011.

PathWays PA, a services and advocacy organization for women, children and families, will present the report, which is updated every two years. The Self-Sufficiency Standard for Pennsylvania provides a “real world” approach to measuring the income needs of families in every county in the state so that they can meet those needs without relying on public or private assistance. The Standard is based on the cost of each basic need in each county—food, housing, health care, child care, transportation and taxes— determined independently using verifiable and publicly available data.

As a measure, the Standard provides a more accurate picture than do federal poverty guidelines on the economic needs of working families. For example, a Self-Sufficiency Wage for a family with two adults and two children in Dauphin County is $53,316, which is 241 percent of the Federal Poverty Level.

The 7th edition of the Self-Sufficiency Standard for Pennsylvania was developed by Diana M. Pearce, Ph.D., director for the Center for Women’s Welfare, University of Washington School of Social Work. It was prepared by university staff along with Marianne Bellesorte, Carol Goertzel and Kate Scully of PathWays PA.

On Tuesday, May 18, 2010, at 4:00 PM, reporters will have the opportunity to call a dedicated phone line to interview leaders from PathWays PA and the report’s author. Contact Marianne Bellesorte, Director of Policy, 610-543-5022 x209 or mbellesorte@pathwayspa.org if you wish to participate in the virtual press conference. You must register to get the press conference phone number.

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PathWaysPA, the began in 1978 as the Women's Association for Women's Alternatives, one of Pennsylvania's first residential programs to keep low-income, vulnerable women together with their children. It has grown to become one of the Greater Philadelphia region's foremost providers of residential and community-based services for women and their children. Each year PathWaysPA serves more than 4,400 women, children and families who reside in Philadelphia, Delaware, and Chester counties through a full complement of social services, job training and employment assistance, outreach and residential programs.

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