Georgia poverty rate hits 30 year high
According to a new report released by the Georgia Budget and Policy Institute, the state's poverty rate is at its highest point in 30 years. The report, released Tuesday, also says the state's median household income has reverted back to where it was in 1990.
The trend is evident in places like Milledgeville, where Flagg Chapel Baptist Church Pastor Omer Reid says thousands of jobs have been lost in the last two years.
Reid's congregation handed out turkeys Wednesday for its seventh annual Gobbler giveaway, and while the church does its best to help people in need, lately, keeping everyone satisfied has been tough.
"We're giving away one-hundred-fifty turkeys today and we probably could have given away fifteen-hundred turkeys had we have them," Reid said.
Macon non-profit organization Diamond Foundation Board Member Will Butler says the face of poverty is changing, from typical homelessness to once prominent families facing trying times.
"There are working men and women with children and families (who are homeless now) as well," Butler said.
Despite the bleak report, Butler says his organization's goal to eradicate homelessness remains the same.
"If we can just reach out to one person, at a time ... Then we feel quite comfortable that we can work together and eliminate the homelessness and the food shortage in the area," Butler said.
While Pastor Reid is hopeful Butler is correct, he remains uncertain.
"I don't know who in the community across Central Georgia who can help with this problem but our church is of course open and we're doing what we can do and we certainly accept any help that we can get," Reid said.