Weekly Grades for the Obama Administration on Poverty: C
50 Day Average: C
Every week since January we have posted grades for the Administration on their attempts to fight poverty. This week we are giving them a solid C, which also is the grade that the administration has earned for their first 50 days. By assigning a numeric number to their grades for the first eight weeks, the Obama Administration has reached a 77% or a solid C in fighting poverty.
What has happened over the last week? There was a front page Washington Post article on the priorities of the new Donovan HUD administration on the construction of affordable rental housing. This is a huge change from the almost rabid obsession with pushing people into home ownership during the last eight years. The administration gets docked for convening the Middle Class task force before looking at poverty. The health care reform task force met again on Thursday in Michigan, and that is certainly a good thing. There was an education forum on Monday to lay out the plans for improving America's education system. The current education system certainly contributes to homelessness. The HUD Secretary was in New Orleans to accept the City's plan to rebuild. There did not seem to be any new money announced, and the levy system is still a failure. I looked at the poverty agenda on Whitehouse.gov, and it seems to me that only one broad goal has even had any attention given to it so far. Finally, there was a status update delivered on the state of ethics reform within the government. I like these periodic status updates, and hope that they continue. It is easy to put out a press release, but have to report back to the country on how things are going is important.
So, a few good things happened and there was some distractions from addressing poverty. Two months into the new administration, they are pulling down a solid "C" on the academic scale in addressing poverty. Since the last president campaigned on his being a solid C student at Yale (I suspect a gentleman's C because of his Dad), I would imagine that this administration is shooting for a higher grade. We will continue to look for signs that they are serious about reducing poverty and homelessness.
Posts by Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless staff and Board.