Welfare moms caught up in bureaucracy (Metro NY)

I’ve written about the scene at the Project FAIR help desk for welfare recipients before; today I tell the stories of two women I met last week that exemplify how trying to jump through welfare’s nonsensical hoops can be a full-time job:

If you’ve ever been tempted to think of welfare recipients as lazy, it’s worth a visit to the “fair hearing” site in Brooklyn, where people who get public benefits — whether welfare, food stamps, disability or Medicaid — can go when they have a problem with the system.

Take Crystal Maurin, who was informed earlier this year that she’d failed to show she was doing the 35 hours a week of “work activities” the city now requires. (That she was fully employed at the time as a child-care worker for the city itself — leaving her own 2-year-old with friends while doing so — apparently wasn’t proof enough.)… [read more]