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Policy

How rules and regulation can  shape opportunity.

smoking a cigarette
Julie / Flickr CC / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Lighting up may become a lot less convenient for smokers who live in public housing.

That's because the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development issued a sweeping rule this week that prohibits smoking in all federally subsidized public housing developments in the U.S.

Pictures of Money / Flickr CC / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

When people talk about poverty, the conversation typically revolves around the economic condition of a household.

social security administration
ilvadel / Flickr CC / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

More than 60 million people in the U.S. receive Social Security benefits. These payments play a key role in helping millions of Americans stay above the poverty line.

Social Security lifted more than 22 million people in the U.S. out of poverty in 2015, according to a report released this week by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

kids on merry-go-round
guilherme jofili / Flickr CC / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

More than one in five children in the U.S. lives in poverty. That's nearly 16 million kids.

And nearly twice as many experience poverty at some point during childhood.

Research shows poverty is the greatest threat to a child's well-being, and childhood poverty can have lifelong consequences.

Voting sign
Justin Grimes / Flickr CC / HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

This presidential campaign cycle has been nothing short of...interesting. And here we are, just 28 days from election day.

But on November 8, nearly 6 million Americans won't be allowed to cast a ballot. The reason why? Felony disenfranchisement laws.

jail cells
miss_millions / Flickr CC / HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

Holding people in jail because they are too poor to make bail is unconstitutional, the U.S. Department of Justice declared in a court filing last week.

The filing came in support of the case of Maurice Walker of Calhoun, Georgia, who was kept in jail six nights because he could not pay the fixed bail amount of $160.

President Bill Clinton
Gage Skidmore / Flickr CC / HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

Twenty years ago, President Bill Clinton signed a welfare reform bill he said would "end welfare as we know it."

The goal of the bill was to get poor families off welfare and into the workforce.

Families caught in middle of "broken" immigration system

Aug 10, 2016
woman in blue shirt
Courtesy of Susan Reed

Politicians proclaim it. People argue about it. We hear it often:  "Our immigration system is broken."

But what exactly does that mean?

That’s a tough question to answer.

The U.S. immigration system is a complex and often confusing web of policies. Those policies touch everyone from the migrant farm worker to international Ph.D students. For years now, lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have called for an overhaul of our immigration system.

collage of three photos
Flickr CC

 

Throughout your day, you’re likely meeting undocumented workers everywhere you go: the server at a restaurant.The stylist at the salon.The yard worker cutting your lawn.

 

“You can’t really go a single day without encountering one of them,” said Teresa Hendricks, the director and senior litigator for Migrant Legal Aid in Grand Rapids. “Although you wouldn’t know it because they’re living under the radar.”

 

headshot of Tel Ganesan
Courtesy of Tel Ganesan

Much of the national debate about immigration reform focuses on unskilled foreign-born workers.

But there’s another side: the highly-skilled foreign-born worker who has the knowledge and skills that businesses so badly need.

Tel Ganesan is the CEO and president of Kyyba, Incorporated. It’s an engineering services and software product company based in Farmington Hills.

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