Who is your “One in Four”?

The next time you are at a t-ball game, or a parade, or at the local pool, take a good look around. One in four working families in Nebraska is low-income, meaning that they have difficulty meeting their basic needs and struggle to get ahead. Maybe it’s the high school janitor, whose kid plays third base. Maybe it’s your neighbor, who recently lost his job. Maybe it’s you.

Regardless of who your “One in Four” is, they likely play an important role in your community. Working families are the backbone of Nebraska communities – folks who work hard and are committed to raising children here – are an important part of what makes our state great. And Nebraskans do work hard, our state ranks in the top five in the nation for people who work, people who work more than one job, and people looking for work.

That’s why at Nebraska Appleseed, we believe that building opportunity for working families in Nebraska will be a determining factor in economic recovery today and the state’s ability to compete in the future. We need to work together to turn our Midwestern work ethic into prosperity for all Nebraskans.

What does that mean, in practice? It means many different things, built on the principle the access to opportunity will contribute to stronger families, stronger communities, and a stronger economy. It means making sure that Nebraska tax incentive dollars go to jobs with good wages and benefits or opportunities to advance. It means bringing educational institutions, employers, and workers together to create training programs that fill needs in Nebraska’s health care and information technology industries while giving workers a new chance to earn family supporting wages. It means making sure that there are quality child care options for kids while their parents work to get ahead.

And how does that happen, in practice? It happens in many different ways, but it begins by coming together to discuss the issues and solutions – it begins by addressing questions like: How would my life be different if I had new opportunities? How would my community be different if everyone had a chance to pursue their own American Dream? What needs to happen to make the change? How can I be a part of economic recovery today and the success of my community in the future?

So, Nebraska Appleseed invites you to join us for just such a conversation – join us to begin creating new opportunities for working people in our state. We are holding events statewide this summer entitled “Building the Good Life in Nebraska: A Town-Hall Discussion about Creating Opportunity for Nebraska Families and Workers.” Be a part of it! And bring your family, your friends, – and your neighbor, the one whose kid plays third base. To learn more, click here: www.neappleseed.org/rsvp

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