October 31, 2018
DID YOU KNOW: Poverty is a story of low wage work
  • Wages for low wage workers have barely grown over last 20 years while incomes for the top 1% have more than tripled.
  • Most low-income families (2/3 of those in poverty) include a working adult.
  • High cost of housing combined with transportation challenges in some parts of the state make it harder to earn a living wage.
  • Lack of affordable transportation makes it hard to get to work as well as meet basic needs (food, healthcare).
For more information and to access the data, "Obstacles on the Road to Opportunity: Finding a Way Forward" published in May 2018
POLICY MATTERS: Addressing Transportation Challenges
Some ideas for addressing transportation challenges came out of our forum on poverty and finding the way forward in the Pioneer Valley that took place last Friday, October 26, in Springfield at the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts.
  • Expand public transit system including commuter rail
  • Diversify transportation options
    • Don't rely on large buses.  Develop a fleet of smaller vehicles.
  • Provide resources to cover purchasing or repairing personal vehicles
  • Encourage expansion of ride service providers and small transport companies
The combined cost of housing and transportation along with low average incomes make for unique circumstances across the Pioneer Valley.  To explore more data, click here.

Transportation is a social determinant of health.  Access to work, school, grocery store, healthcare, etc. are critical for healthy living.  

Visit Transportation for Mass for more information.
MAKING A DIFFERENCE: Making Our Voices Heard
How can we take action?
  • Vote
  • Work Together
  • Listen to those we serve
  • Encourage Census Participation
  • Focus on local and regional issues

The above word cloud is result of asking those who attended our forum last week in Springfield for one word that describes how you can help in the fight against poverty.   We can all take action!
Stay tuned for our next newsletter focused on how CAA's support health and address the social determinants of health.

Stay tuned for details about the next forum on poverty and the way forward in the Berkshires on January 11.

Our Mission
To strengthen and connect the statewide network of Community Action Agencies and collectively advocate for an end to poverty.

Our Vision
All MA residents will be able to meet their basic needs, access economic opportunities, build strong communities and move toward prosperity...

Find your Agency
There are 23 Community Action Agencies in Massachusetts serving virtually every city and town in the state.   To locate the agency in your area and learn more about the programs they offer,  click here .

Read our 2017 Annual Report
                                              #End PovertyMA