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It’s Been a Bad Winter for Low-Income Ohioans

Tuesday, March 25, 2014 at 4:49 PM

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St. Augustine Catholic Church in Tremont, which offers free meals for the hungry. (Nick Castele / ideastream)

The snow is falling across much of Ohio this afternoon. And it’s a reminder for people who work with low-income Ohioans that this winter has been particularly bad. Ohio Public Radio’s Karen Kasler reports.

This winter has been tough for anyone who’s had to make their way through it to go to work or to school. But for low-income Ohioans, it’s been especially difficult – some lost pay and even had to risk their jobs to take time off when school was cancelled—and spikes in gas prices have hurt, too.

And Lisa Hamler-Fugitt with the Ohio Association of Food Banks says the pain keeps coming.

“Now these high heating bills are hitting our mailboxes.” Hamler-Fugitt said. “Families who earn low incomes, seniors and persons with disabilities on fixed incomes are now opening those utility bills and are literally in shock.”

And she says groups that work with people in poverty weren’t spared. Schools lost money when they weren’t reimbursed for food bought for free and reduced priced meals that were never served. And food banks have had to scramble and spend when the polar vortex and the western drought made finding fresh produce a challenge. 

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Community/Human Interest, Environment

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