Contact: Kate Constalie,, 608-266-5490

Special Session bills will keep families in poverty

MADISON, WI – In an attempt to boost his approval ratings in a tough election year, Gov. Walker has called for a Special Session on Welfare Reform. The package of proposals that will create more barriers for struggling families to access food and long-term job training received a joint Senate and Assembly hearing today.

“Governor Walker and Legislative Republicans are out of touch with the needs of struggling families,” said Senate Democratic Leader Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse). “Rather than introducing solutions that address the cost of child care and stagnant wages, Gov. Walker wants to limit transportation options for people to get to work and push for costly and ineffective policies that will hurt Wisconsin’s most vulnerable.”

According to the Hunger Task Force, 40 percent of FoodShare households have a member who is either elderly, blind or disabled and 43 percent of recipients are children. Additionally, since 100 percent of FoodShare benefits are federal dollars coming into the state, these proposals could end up costing the state of Wisconsin millions of dollars.

“It’s sad and desperate that Gov. Walker thinks the best way to win re-election is to go after struggling families who are trying to get ahead,” Shilling said. “Creating more barriers for families, seniors and people with disabilities is not the Wisconsin way, and I know we can do better.”

While Republicans create barriers for low-income families to access quality child care, health services and food assistance, Democrats remain committed to expanding economic opportunities, improving financial security and working to strengthen community partnerships.

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