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Monday, Aug. 28, 2017

Who Is A.L .I.C.E.?

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We see ALICE every day – hard-working people who keep Northwest Louisiana’s economy moving, but who are uncertain that they can put enough food on their own tables.

ALICE stands for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed. The United Way term represents the growing number of individuals and families who are working, but unable to afford basic household necessities such as housing, child care, health care, food and transportation.

ALICE is everywhere and can be seen every day. From Plain Dealing to Winnfi eld, Arcadia to Mooringsport, Springhill to Many – ALICE lives in the mosaic of communities that make up Northwest Louisiana. ALICE represents people working in jobs that are needed, but do not always pay enough to afford the basics. This could be cashiers, child care workers, food service personnel, home health aides, bank tellers, repair technicians, landscapers and many others.

In Louisiana, 42 percent (723,077 households) struggle to afford the basics and live below the ALICE Threshold —21 percent of Louisiana households are ALICE, and 19 percent live in poverty. For Northwest Louisiana, this trend is higher than the state average at 45 percent struggling (114,912 households); 23 percent are ALICE, and 22 percent live in poverty.

United Way of Northwest Louisiana operates several internal programs to fi ll gaps where services are lacking to help ALICE families, including Bank On Northwest Louisiana, VITA and FamilyWize.

“The Louisiana United Way ALICE Report has provided high-quality, research-based information to better understand those who are struggling in our communities and allowed us to work on innovative solutions for the future,” said Lynn Stevens, chief operating offi cer of United Way of Northwest Louisiana.

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