Economic Justice News

Cutting food stamps

October 25, 2013
The Courier-Journal

In Kentucky, food stamps helps about 878,000 people get enough to eat. That’s about 20 percent of all Kentucky residents, roughly about the same number of those who live in poverty. But many are likely to get hungrier as cuts take effect.

Jefferson County Chapter discusses local issues

October 22, 2013 at 04:37pm

Jefferson County Chapter recently chose to identify local issues as a way to both improve the county and also reach out to a broader section of the urban population that is not yet connected to KFTC’s statewide work. The process for local issue selection is not obvious. Assembled KFTC members have no shortage of issues, quickly identifying years worth of issues worthy of grassroots attention. There is no shortage of cooperative attitude, but there are many potential approaches to this important decision process. 

Chapter members agreed the first step to selecting the chapter issue was to brainstorm issues to be discussed at the April chapter meeting. KFTC principles for issue selection were presented by Jefferson County organizer Alicia Hurle, and discussion led to additional criteria being added. The group determined a local issue should be one that is winnable with opportunities for action in the short term, even if completely winning would ultimately take focus over a longer time horizon. The group also agreed the ideal local issue would be important to people in areas not currently connected to state wide work. We want an issue that will energize the chapter and get members involved in our work. Outreach to chapter members encouraged them to contribute issues they would like to see considered and were invited to participate in discussion of issues and the process for selecting issues at the next chapter meeting.

"It feels very good to be a Kentuckian right now."

October 3, 2013 at 12:01pm

Kendell Nash, a KFTC member in Jefferson County, does not shy away from ways to make Kentucky better, and there are certainly some good starting points that most Kentuckians are aware of, especially this week. But yesterday, after signing up her family for health insurance on KYNECT, Kendell said, "It feels very good to be a Kentuckian right now."

Kentucky is playing a key role in the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. It is the only southern state to have opened up a state-based marketplace. (Governor Beshear's affirmation of how Kentuckians would benefit drew national acclaim. Check out this New York Times story about the pepople left behind in states that have not opted in.)  It is one of only two southern states (Arkansas is the other) to be moving toward expanding Medicaid to higher incomes. Further, the process of getting people signed up for health coverage seems to have gone better in Kentucky than in many other states. 

What a day!

October 2, 2013 at 12:25am

What a day. Kentucky Deserves Better rally

Scanning KFTC’s social media feeds confirms, of course, frustration over tactics by House Republicans, and fear about the impact of the government shutdown. Attempts to confirm weekend hikes, fall camping trips, and sources for research projects kept bumping up against websites that are now closed because of the federal government shutdown. The impact of the shutdown will continue until well after it has passed.  What we know now is that it will be significant, with thousands of federal workers furloughed, Head Start programs shutting down, federal school lunch programs and WIC uncertain, and the EPA basically shuttered.

Southern Kentucky Update

October 1, 2013 at 08:00pm
Southern Kentucky

On September 24, Southern Kentucky KFTC members came together for their regular monthly chapter meeting with many big updates and even bigger plans for the next few months.

Steering Committee representatives updated members on the recent steering committee retreat held in Whitesburg, which provided both an orientation to newly elected representatives and an exciting start to our Fall Fundraising campaign. Several local members have agreed to participate in our Power Builders program, joining members all across Kentucky to celebrate KFTC’s focus on growing a healthy democracy as we raise funds, awareness, and members. To see how to join in this HUGE event, visit our KFTC POWER BUILDER page.

My State Needs Obamacare. Now.

September 29, 2013
New York Times

"There’s a huge disconnect between the rank partisanship of national politics and the outlook of governors whose job it is to help beleaguered families, strengthen work forces, attract companies and create a balanced budget."

Wendell Berry: Local Economies to Save the Land and People

September 27, 2013 at 01:44pm

Noted Kentucky farmer and author Wendell Berry spoke during the opening session of KFTC's annual membership meeting in August. We are pleased to share the full text of his speech below. You may also download his essay.

Also, be sure to mark your calendars for a very special interview with Wendell Berry by Bill Moyers. Their conversation will be shown nationwide on public television stations in early October. In Kentucky the program will be aired twice on Sunday, October 6, 2013. It will be shown on KET 1 at 11 a.m. and on KET 2 at 6 p.m.

LOCAL ECONOMIES TO SAVE THE LAND AND THE PEOPLE

Written and delivered by Wendell Berry at the KFTC annual membership meeting, August 16, 2013

Wendell Berry and Bev MayAs often before, my thoughts begin with the modern history of rural Kentucky, which in all of its regions has been deplorable. In my county, for example, as recently as the middle of the last century, every town was a thriving economic and social center. Now all of them are either dying or dead. If there is any concern about this in any of the state’s institutions, I have yet to hear about it. The people in these towns and their tributary landscapes once were supported by their usefulness to one another. Now that mutual usefulness has been removed and the people relate to one another increasingly as random particles.

Kynect marketplace opens up on Tuesday, Help spread the word

September 27, 2013 at 10:27am

It's always a great time to be a Kentuckian, but thanks to Governor Beshear making the choice to accept federal money to expand Medicaid and create our own healthcare marketplace, Kynect, it is time to brag a little and get excited. Everyone knows that Kentucky, while awesome, continues to rank at the bottom in most national health rankings.

Reflections on the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington

September 5, 2013 at 12:18pm

KFTC sent a delegation of 11 people to participate in the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. They traveled with a group of about 100 Kentuckians on buses organized by the Kentucky Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression. These reflections and photos are from one member who made the trip.

Fifty years have passed since the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, when Martin Luther King Jr. famously bellowed, “I have a dream” here on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial where I now stand.

50th Anniversary of the March on Washington

There are deeply eroded grooves on each marble step, worn and weary from the footsteps of previous generations who likewise marched for equality. From the 1913 Women Suffrage Parade to the Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom in 1957, these steps have become sacred ground for the forgotten, neglected, and disenfranchised citizens of our nation.

Now here we stand, honoring the legacy of Dr. King, Medgar Evers, James Chaney, Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman, and others who sacrificed their lives so that my generation could freely go to the polls on Election Day and attend integrated schools.

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