According to a federal class action lawsuit filed in Alabama this month, the city of Alexander is incarcerating people who are unable to pay court fees and fines in a modern-day debtors prison. The suit argues the practice not only constitutes false imprisonment, but also violates inmates’ Fourth, Sixth and Fourteenth Amendment rights under the Constitution.
The 1996 welfare reform law championed by the Clinton Administration known as the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act was supposed to bring in a new era and “end welfare as we know it.” In some sense it did, as the consequence of the law has been a considerable increase in extreme poverty in America.
Late last year, in response to a series of strikes by workers and protests by activists, Walmart agreed to raise wages so that many of the company’s workers received at least a meager $9 an hour in 2015. Unfortunately, Walmart’s entire business model is based on severely exploiting workers in the US, so the order has now come down from Walmart executives to cut workers’ hours to lower company costs.
In Shadowproof’s Mailbag: Our borders are under invasion (from refugee children?)! Poor people are lazy and just don’t want to work. Why is the corporate-owned media telling us to hate other poor people and ignore the global 1%? Also: Campaign Zero, Ferguson, and people’s movements for revolutionary change.
The financial collapse of 2008 and the absence of true economic recovery in the years since has left millions more children in poverty than before the recession. About 22 percent of American children live in poverty, and even that figure may not fully account for all those who are struggling.