Some Upset With New Welfare Rules

1 decade 4 months 3 weeks ago Friday, July 20 2007 Jul 20, 2007 Friday, July 20, 2007 5:14:09 PM CDT July 20, 2007 in News
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Right now, Missourians applying for assistance can get cash without looking for a job, but a new rule will change that.

One Mid-Missouri group is upset about the change. Grass Roots Organizing says the rule will make it harder for people who need welfare to get it. To stay within federal rules, all new applicants must also meet with a state worker to start looking for a job. Only 19 percent of welfare recipients do that now.

Missouri social services says work officials will be available at the same places that people apply for cash assistance.

"What concerns me about the policy is we're not going to address the barriers to work, and we're going to punish the kids, and the state still gets their money," said Robin Acree of Grass Roots Organizing.

"We really have a terrific working environment with the division of workplace development," said Ana Compain-Romero of Missouri Social Services. "And in many of our offices there's already one of those offices there. It's a one-stop shop."

Once the changes go into effect at the end of the year, Missouri will have to get 46 percent participation. If the state doesn't make the mark, it could lose $11 million in federal aid.

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