Guinta champions “A Better Way” to fight poverty

U.S. Rep. Frank Guinta (R-NH) called for a new national strategy to address the plight of more than 46 million Americans living in poverty, highlighting a policy agenda by House Republicans as a solution to the persistent problem.

“Despite many trillions of dollars to combat poverty over the years, and dozens of overlapping programs to fix the problem, the poverty rate remains largely unchanged,” Guinta wrote in a recent column.

“A Better Way” to fight poverty is one plank of a comprehensive policy agenda crafted by House Republican lawmakers. It would take steps to address causes of poverty like a weak economy, unemployment and unaffordable housing. The plan also would strengthen work requirements for federal assistance programs.

“Discouraged workers, an historic number of whom have dropped out, would find new incentives to rejoin the workforce. After all, a good-paying job is the best anti-poverty program there is,” Guinta said.

The blueprint to defeat poverty would prioritize training programs that help workers develop in-demand skills needed to secure jobs in today’s economy. The plan would ease federal restrictions on grants to states to allow them to better tailor training programs to local employers with jobs to fill.

In addition, the plan would make housing and education benefits portable, allowing many to escape poverty, and would simplify federal student aid to reduce personal debt, Guinta wrote. Access to financial and retirement planning would create economic independence.

“A cycle of desperation and dependence makes poverty a seemingly impossible foe. But House Republicans have A Better Way to defeat it,” Guinta said.