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NPR: Ohioans feeling the economic pinch

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by poindexter, Jul 18, 2008.

  1. poindexter

    poindexter Well-Known Member

    All Things Considered, July 17, 2008 · A generation ago, the livelihood of Gloria Nunez's family was built on cars.

    Her father worked at General Motors for 45 years before retiring. Her mother taught driver's education. Nunez and her six siblings grew up middle class.

    Things have changed considerably for this Ohio family.

    Nunez's van broke down last fall. Now, her 19-year-old daughter has no reliable transportation out of their subsidized housing complex in Fostoria, 40 miles south of Toledo, to look for a job.

    Nunez and most of her siblings and their spouses are unemployed and rely on government assistance and food stamps. Some have part-time jobs, but working is made more difficult with no car or public transportation.

    Low-income families in Ohio say they are particularly hard-hit by the changes in the economy, according to a new poll conducted by NPR, The Kaiser Family Foundation and Harvard School of Public Health. Two-thirds of lower-income respondents, or 66 percent, say paying for gas is a serious problem because of recent changes in the economy. Nearly half of low-income Ohioans, or 47 percent, say that getting a well-paying job or a raise in pay is also major problem.

    'I Just Can't Get A Job'

    Nunez, 40, has never worked and has no high school degree. She says a car accident 17 years ago left her depressed and disabled, incapable of getting a job. Instead, she and her daughter, Angelica Hernandez, survive on a $637 Social Security check and $102 in food stamps.

    Hernandez received her high school diploma and has had several jobs in recent years. But now, because fewer restaurants and stores are hiring, she says she finds it hard to find a job. Even if she could, she says it's particularly hard to imagine how she'll keep it. She says she needs someone to give her a lift just to get to an interview. And with gas prices so high, she's not sure she could afford to pay someone to drive her to work every day.

    People tell Nunez her daughter could get more money in public assistance if she had a child.

    "A lot of people have told me, 'Why don't your daughter have a kid?'"

    They both reject that as a plan.

    "I'm trying to get a job," Hernandez says. "I just can't get a job."

    Hernandez says she's trying to get training to be a nurse's assistant, but without her own set of wheels or enough money to pay others for gas, it hasn't been easy.

    'What's Going To Happen To Us?'

    Most of their extended family lives in the same townhouse complex. The only employer within walking distance is a ThyssenKrupp factory that makes diesel engine parts. That facility, which employs 400 people, is shutting down and moving to Illinois next year.

    The only one with a car is Irma Hernandez, Nunez's mother. Hernandez says that with a teenage son still at home, the cost of feeding him and sending him to school is rising, and she can no longer pay for the car.

    She's now two car payments behind.

    "I'm about to lose my car," she says on her way to pick up one of her daughters to take her to Toledo. "So then what's going to happen to us?"

    So Nunez and her daughter are mostly stuck at home.

    The rising cost of food means their money gets them about a third fewer bags of groceries — $100 used to buy about 12 bags of groceries, but now it's more like seven or eight. So they cut back on expensive items like meat, and they don't buy extras like ice cream anymore. Instead, they eat a lot of starches like potatoes and noodles.

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2014
  2. Mooninite

    Mooninite Member

    Yeah, it is bad here in Ohio. But it's bad everywhere.
    Ahh Fostoria. Grew up there. My grandparents, their brothers and sisters, my parents all worked at automobile related factories that have since closed up shop and moved away.
    As I went to college I slowly saw the community decay from within. Unemployment, drug abuse, a deteriorating public school system, reliance on public assistance, corruption and just general buffoonery in city hall.
    What was once a proud blue collar small town is just a shell of its former self.
  3. Angola!

    Angola! Guest

    Somehow, I don't think your tale is what poin was getting at.
  4. Mooninite

    Mooninite Member

    Yeah I know what poin was getting at.
  5. amraeder

    amraeder Well-Known Member

    It's been hard economic times in Ohio for a while now. The recent recession doesn't help I'm sure, but things have hardly been milk and honey even in the boom times.
  6. poindexter

    poindexter Well-Known Member

    Based on the NPR story, Not only is Ohio the land of milk and honey, its the land of Cheetos, pop tars, grape soda and ding dongs.
  7. D-Backs Hack

    D-Backs Hack Guest

    Man, I need to move there.
  8. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Happiness is being an Ohio State fan?
  9. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    In a good economy these ladies are five bills each.
  10. HackyMcHack

    HackyMcHack Member

    Played football at Fostoria a couple of times back in the day. Not a pleasant trip. That's all I've got.
  11. BYH

    BYH Active Member

    Yo. ding dongs man, ding dongs. Ding dongs ding dongs yo.

  12. D.Sanchez

    D.Sanchez Member

    Easy now, the thyroid gland can be a cruel mistress - especially when you feed it government cheese and Twinkies.

    "Nunez, 40, has never worked and has no high school degree. She says a car accident 17 years ago left her depressed and disabled, incapable of getting a job."

    So, what was her excuse between the ages of 16 and 23? I see that Angelica did find the time/money to get a nice forearm tattoo.
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