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Less Pity than I use to have

January 6th, 2018 at 10:35 am

A number of my friends are on social assistance for one reason or another. I use to pity them, or rather feel sorry for them because this should mean they can afford less than a working person. On closer observation I noticed they actually are able to afford a lot of little things that I am unable to afford.

I asked my one friend to share with me what money they get each month. They get their rent covered by social assistance and housing supplement which comes to $850 a month. They get child tax credit for 2 children which is $900 a month. These two items alone add up to more than I get paid each month at a full time job. Plus social assistance pays their utility bills. Since utilities are paid for by others water useage is not something they worry about in the summer, the paddling pool is filled and emptied every day. They use normal 60 watt bulbs, and there is a number of lights in the house that are on 24 hours a day. Because their income from social assistance is low they qualify for food bank, which gives you approximately 2 days worth of food, twice a month(so 4 days worth of food), still this is approximately $60 to $80 dollars worth of food a month(2 to 3 large grocery bags each time).

All of the benefits they get add up to more than I make from a full time job that pays a couple dollars an hour more than minimum wage, plus the income that I make from renting out one of the rooms in my house so that I can pay my bills each month. I really should consider finding away to just get onto social assistance, just kidding, I would rather work and know I earned the money than sit at home.

Sorry if I offend anyone by letting my thoughts be known. I was just shocked to realize that what I consider to be the poor people in my life that I help by running around in my car to get groceries and pay bills, give food to because they have run out, are actually bringing in more money per month than I am.

5 Responses to “Less Pity than I use to have”

  1. PatientSaver Says:

    Keep in mind Trump has said he's going to make it much harder for people to qualify for various assistance programs and that he feels they should all get jobs.

    Also keep in mind that those who rely on govt assistance long term will be penalized when they want to start collecting Social Security and come to find out that because they had so many years with low income, their monthly SS payments will also be low.

    They also don't get the benefit of a contributing to a tax-deferred 401k, like you may at work, which is a huge plus when you consider how much you pay in taxes. I'd rather be self-sufficient.

  2. laura Says:

    I think that all you can do is worry about yourself and your situation. I have a friend that makes the same amount as my husband. We are a family of 6 in a house with huge taxes, she’s in a condo. She wonders why I don’t do things she suggests, like going out to happy hour, etc. She has also complained that I wouldn’t fly on a different airline (Spirit was $150 round trip airfare from the Midwest to CA) because she’d have to pay additional for her luggage and I was just doing carry-on. It simply is what it is. Your sidebar shows you are a homeowner and I’m presuming these folks aren’t. I think sometimes it’s just apples and bananas.

  3. Jane Says:

    I wouldn't dwell on it for a couple reasons. One is that you never really know other people's finances, and just because somebody appears to "afford" something doesn't mean it isn't actually putting them into debt. You also mentioned they have 2 kids, which means much higher expenses even if their income is the same as a single adult.

    But the biggest thing is that the time you spend working to support yourself and being responsibile can actually help improve your situation down the road, since you're building work history and experience, rather than a huge unemployment gap on your resume. Plus you don't have to worry as much about the whims of politicians totally changing these policies.

  4. rob62521 Says:

    You didn't offend me. There are some folks who truly can't work and deserve what they are given, but there are so many who have absued the system. And it is frustrating to realize they make as much or more than you do working. But, you have a work ethic and you are doing what is right. Don't get discouraged. Yes, easier said than done.

  5. LivingAlmostLarge Says:

    Just remember that you are single living on that income. I have to say it's not fun to be living on the same income as a single person as a family of 4. It seems like a lot but 3 extra mouths to feed can easily kill a monthly budget with one accident.

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