A picture of Representative Marcia L. Fudge
Marcia F.
Democrat OH 11

About Rep. Marcia
  • Poverty and Its Impacts on American Families

    by Representative Marcia L. Fudge

    Posted on 2015-12-09

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    FUDGE. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentlewoman for yielding.

    I just want to say that there is no one in this Congress who works harder and puts in more time trying to find a way to come back and eradicate poverty than Barbara Lee. It is my pleasure and my privilege to work with you every day. I have learned so much from you, and I just want you to continue to do the people's work, and I appreciate it.

    Mr. Speaker, I rise to address a topic that many of us know far too well, and that is poverty. I see its impact on the people of the 11th Congressional District every day.

    My district has some of the Nation's most impoverished cities. The overall poverty rate is 28 percent. Out of the 435 Congressional districts in the United States, my district is one of the top 20 poorest districts in America.

    Nearly 200,000 of my constituents live in poverty. I see and talk to poor people every day. Mothers and fathers without jobs, families with little to no access to healthy food or adequate housing, and children-- yes, Mr. Speaker, children--who are in overcrowded classrooms with outdated textbooks.

    Poverty is the source of our Nation's most persistent social and economic issues. It permeates our entire society and has victimized too many Americans for far too long.

    We don't need another committee hearing on hunger or poverty to tell us what we already know. We know what the problems are and how to address them.

    My colleagues and I have been proactive in finding solutions to eradicate poverty in this, the wealthiest country in the world. I have introduced bills supporting initiatives to feed children and families, fought to protect safety-net programs, and insisted Congress develop policies that create jobs that pay a living wage.

    The majority in this House has not been a willing participant. Some Members believe that if you don't work, you are lazy. Others believe that poor people are looking for handouts.

    Let me be clear, Mr. Speaker, none of that is true. The people I have spoken to are not looking for a handout. They simply need a hand up, a job to take care of their families and pay their bills. The dignity of work is what we all want.

    {time} 1745 We must put aside politics and pass policies that give everyone a fair chance at the American Dream. When we do not work together, our constituents suffer.

    FDR said: ``The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.'' We must act now.

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