make basic needs accessible
The national recession has pushed poverty in the District to a 30 year high. According to census data, the percentage of District residents living below the federal poverty line – an income of $22,314 for a family of four – rose from 17.6% in 2008 to 19.2% in 2010. This means that nearly 110,000 District residents, including one in three children, live in poverty. Thousands more are at risk of falling into poverty.
Whether we know it or not each of us pays the cost for a city with a high rate of poverty. Poverty and inequality undermines the strength and stability of our city’s businesses, neighborhoods and families. And, it imposes costs – in the form of higher taxes – on every District resident.
Lifting families out of poverty, enabling them to support their families and increase their contributions to our city and our workforce, requires that the basic needs – items such as food, shelter, education, and medical care – of all District residents are met.