Letters to the Editor

Strengthen safety net

Victor Johnson sat on a playground near his apartment on Cambridge Drive in Lexington. The Johnson family was served an eviction notice in late December. They obtained housing through an emergency family shelter program and are trying to repair their credit.
Victor Johnson sat on a playground near his apartment on Cambridge Drive in Lexington. The Johnson family was served an eviction notice in late December. They obtained housing through an emergency family shelter program and are trying to repair their credit. cbertram@herald-leader.com

I was shocked by Beth Musgrave’s Oct. 13 article, “In 12 years, 43,000 renters were evicted from Lexington homes. Why that matters.” The facts and figures truly underscore the local need for greater affordable housing and rental price control, but nationally it shows the necessity for programs like SNAP (food stamps), Medicare and Medicaid.

As the story of the Johnsons goes, one medical emergency coupled with a court-mandated eviction on a credit report can send a family spiraling into poverty with little hope of recovery. Protecting and expanding these programs goes a long way towards helping Kentuckians in similar situations get back on their feet.

I call upon Sens. Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul and especially Rep. Andy Barr to respond to this report by standing up to the president’s reckless and heartless hack and slash approach to programs that protect the most vulnerable Kentuckians. Our friends, neighbors and coworkers could be one car breakdown or health issue away from slipping into this cycle of poverty. Kentucky’s motto is “United We Stand, Divided We Fall.” We must stand together and tell our leaders to reevaluate their priorities and show compassion for their fellow Kentuckians. I hope they haven’t forgotten us.

Andrew Boyce

Georgetown

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