Michigan families to lose welfare benefits for too much truancy - Fox 2 News Headlines

Michigan families to lose welfare benefits for too much truancy

Posted: Updated:
Maureen Taylor with the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization does not support the new policy.  (Credit: WJBK) Maureen Taylor with the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization does not support the new policy. (Credit: WJBK)
  • Michigan families to lose welfare benefits for too much truancyMore>>

  • Let it Rip: Kid misses too much school, no more welfare check

    Let it Rip: Kid misses too much school, no more welfare check

    Thursday, September 27 2012 4:58 PM EDT2012-09-27 20:58:51 GMT
    Michigan parents whose children don't attend school could lose welfare cash benefits under a new policy set to take effect on Monday.  Is this really a good idea?
    Michigan parents whose children don't attend school could lose welfare cash benefits under a new policy set to take effect on Monday.  The idea is to get kids to go to school, but does this new policy unfairly punish families who need help?
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (WJBK) -

The State of Michigan is laying down some new rules when it comes to welfare. If you're a parent of school age children, they better attend class regularly or you risk losing your benefits.

Some of the people targeted by this new plan say it's just not that simple. There are a lot of reasons why kids can't make it to school and taking away the entire family's state aid they feel is not the answer.

"I think it's very unfair, and I think it's very stupid. I mean, it doesn't make sense," said Ebony Boost, who has three children and is currently on welfare.

She just learned about the state's new policy that will take effect October 1. If your child is truant missing more than ten days of school, your family's welfare cash benefits will be cut off.

"Maybe they have household problems, the parents. There might be something going on in the home, but I think they just need to investigate that further," Boost remarked.

The Michigan Department of Human Services is keeping tabs on kids ages six to 15 years old who will now have to prove they attended school. Threatening to take away state aid is expected to make parents more responsible.

"Our whole goal is that we're going to increase academic success for children," said Sheryl Thompson with the Department of Human Services. "We're going to have higher graduation rates because the most important thing with this also is that we want to end generational poverty and it starts by increasing our educational values."

Detroit Public Schools has one of the largest truancy rates in the state. Critics of the new crackdown don't see the connection.

"It's not always as simple as saying your the mother, send them to school," said Theresa Williams, a mother of four that receives state aid. "If it was that simple, it would be done. We wouldn't even be at this stage of them talking about that. So, it's not always that simple. You don't know what's going on inside a home unless you're there."

Maureen Taylor, head of the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization, believes the plan unfairly targets low income families since they are not the only ones who aren't going to school.

"What kind of plan is this? Let's punish everybody. Because this kid may have missed some days of school, maybe we should find out why that kid missed school," she said. "I like motivation, but the motivation here is to take away breakfast, lunch and dinner."

The policy change takes effect two days before Michigan's fall count day when attendance is used to determine the funding a school district gets from the state. There are plenty in favor of the new plan like Ryan Battle, who said there is no excuse why a parent shouldn't be sending their kid to school.

"It matters. I mean, if you're not going to school, if you're not doing what you're supposed to do with your kids, then how is the future going to work? You can't raise new presidents if you don't go to school," he said.

Thompson said the state does plan to work with families and they can get their benefits back if the state gets verification that the student has been back in school for 21 consecutive calendar days.

  • Taryn AsherTaryn AsherMore>>

  • Man accused of calling taxi to move a body

    Man accused of calling taxi to move a body

    Monday, July 28 2014 10:20 PM EDT2014-07-29 02:20:50 GMT
    A mother is struggling with the fact that her 21-year-old daughter lost her battle with drug addiction, and then she learns the despicable lengths two people went to get rid of her child's body.
    A mother is struggling with the fact that her 21-year-old daughter lost her battle with drug addiction, and then she learns the despicable lengths two people went to get rid of her child's body.
  • Renisha McBride's family leaves courtroom as photos are shown

    Renisha McBride's family leaves courtroom as photos are shown

    Thursday, July 24 2014 6:29 PM EDT2014-07-24 22:29:16 GMT
    On day two of the trial for Renisha McBride's shooting death, the final hours of her life and the moments after her death were detailed in court. Thursday the jury heard what Ted Wafer, her accused killer, told police about the shooting that night.  
    On day two of the trial for Renisha McBride's shooting death, the final hours of her life and the moments after her death were detailed in court. Thursday the jury heard what Ted Wafer, her accused killer, told police about the shooting that night.  

  • 1 dead when car crashes into house after driver, passenger shot

    1 dead when car crashes into house after driver, passenger shot

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 10:30 PM EDT2014-07-24 02:30:13 GMT
    One person is dead and another is injured after a shooting on Detroit's west side. The two victims were riding in the same vehicle, which lost control and crashed into the side of a house after the shooting.
    One person is dead and another is injured after a shooting on Detroit's west side. The two victims were riding in the same vehicle, which lost control and crashed into the side of a house after the shooting.
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Detroit Tigers Minor League Pitcher charged with sexual assault.

    Detroit Tigers Minor League Pitcher charged with sexual assault.

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 11:22 AM EDT2014-07-30 15:22:12 GMT
    Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy announced Wednesday that former Detroit Tigers pitcher, Evan Reed, is charged with two counts of third degree criminal sexual conduct.
    Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy announced Wednesday that former Detroit Tigers pitcher, Evan Reed, is charged with two counts of third degree criminal sexual conduct.
  • Prosecutor to discuss sex-assault allegations against former Tigers pitcher Evan Reed

    Prosecutor to discuss sex-assault allegations against former Tigers pitcher Evan Reed

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 7:27 AM EDT2014-07-30 11:27:48 GMT
    Evan ReedEvan Reed
    Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy plans to hold a news conference to announce the results of the warrant review regarding former Tigers pitcher Evan Reed.
    Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy plans to hold a news conference to announce the results of the warrant review regarding former Tigers pitcher Evan Reed.
  • Attorney wants investigation of city clerk over Arab-American voter suppression

    Attorney wants investigation of city clerk over Arab-American voter suppression

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 11:43 PM EDT2014-07-30 03:43:20 GMT
    It is the tale of two cities. one paints a picture of a meticulous Dearborn Heights city clerk, following the law and fighting for a fair election. The other a story of abuse of power, mishandled ballots and voter suppression.Fatima Abdrabboh is an attorney and Michigan's director of the Arab-American Anti-Discrimination Committee the largest chapter in the country. She is calling for a full-scale investigation into claims that Walter Prusiewicz mishandled ballots from Arab-American voters fo...
    It is the tale of two cities. one paints a picture of a meticulous Dearborn Heights city clerk, following the law and fighting for a fair election. The other a story of abuse of power, mishandled ballots and voter suppression.Fatima Abdrabboh is an attorney and Michigan's director of the Arab-American Anti-Discrimination Committee the largest chapter in the country. She is calling for a full-scale investigation into claims that Walter Prusiewicz mishandled ballots from Arab-American voters fo...
Powered by WorldNow

WJBK-TV | Fox 2
16550 West Nine Mile Rd.
Southfield, MI 48075

Main Station: (248) 557-2000
Newsroom: (248) 552-5103

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices