Imagine that this is your family.
Like other families in similar situations, yours will have to make
difficult decisions about how to spend your money. Every month you
have to make choices about how to meet all your financial responsibilities,
including feeding your children. Currently your budget contains no
room for luxuries, such as entertainment or a car.
Item Column #1 Column #2
Rent (2 bedroom apartment) $800.00
Gas, Water & Garbage $60.00
Transportation (2 Bus Passes) $60.00
Medical Care (addition to basic
employer coverage) $60.00
Total Expenditures $1,400.00
Monthly Income $1,400.00
Situation 1: Your child
gets sick. The doctor’s visit, the tests, and the medication costs
are $300.00 more than what your employer paid health insurance will
cover. How will you pay the medical bills?
Situation 2: You lose your
job. The unemployment benefits, which begin one week after your last
pay check arrives is only equal to two-thirds of your regular pay.
Your total monthly income decreases by $400.00. How will you balance
Situation 3: You catch the
flu and miss four days of work. Without paid sick leave, your income
is reduced by $160.00. How will you make up for this shortfall in
Source: Dorosin, Geelan, Gordon, and
Moore, Why is There Hunger in Our Community? (Oakland: Alameda
County Community Food Bank, 1997). Used with permission.