Wednesday, March 22, 2017

The Line: The Dynamics of Poverty

Today we watched a video called The Line about different people living in poverty.  There are a number of important concepts that this movie highlights.

Concepts that the movie exemplifies:

Chapter 1: The New Poverty, Dupage County, IL
Suburban poverty is growing faster than urban or rural poverty and is at a higher rate than urban poverty.
Often, these people will go unnoticed.  For example, there are at least 2% of SHS that qualifies for federal financial aid.  That's about 80 students, but often they go unnoticed.  Sometimes this anonimity is purposeful - there is a stigma that comes with poverty and so some impoverished people feel inferior.
The man in the video experienced downward structural mobility.
Divorce played a role.

Chapter 2: The Violence of Poverty, Chicago, IL
Inner city poverty often accompanies violence.
Those in poverty are often living one trauma away from homelessness.
J Kwest
The threat of violence and trauma leave many urban poor not thinking about the future because they do not plan to live long enough to worry about their future.
One medical disaster can result in a downward spiral for the poor.  Divorce exacerbated her situation.  Sheila moves in with her mom and siblings to create a "community home".  Her children feel stigmatized at her school.

Chapter 4: The Labor of Poverty, Charlotte, North Carolina
Left by his father, he had no money and his mother relied on welfare.  He had to pass up college and find a job instead.   Worked as a horse walker for 20 years, but then moved to North Carolina.  He worked hard, never used drugs, but refused to sleep in the street.  Having no skills, he had trouble finding a job.  He had to move into a homeless shelter.  He found work because a minister runs a nonprofit restaurant called the King's Kitchen.

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