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United Way Index Sees Signs of Progress, Room to Improve for Florida's Working Poor

Photo: Public Domain via Pixabay

The numbers of employed Floridians barely able to afford basic living expenses has seen some improvements in Florida, according new data from the United Way. Economic recovery has helped some households struggling to make ends meet, but new data for Florida finds wages still lag behind major increases in housing, childcare, healthcare, and more. And the United Way says the disparity between take-home pay and household costs is increasingly affecting households in minority communities.

Holly Bullard, the director for financial stability initiatives with the United Way for Florida Suncoast, joins the program to discuss the ALICE index, a term describing those who are "Asset Limited and Income Constrained but Employed." She'll explain what the ALICE index found in Florida when it was first published in 2014, and how the picture has changed for housing, childcare, food, healthcare and more across the state.

Spencer Smith, the communications manager from the United Way of Collier County, also joins the program to provide insight into the ALICE index in Southwest Florida.

Copyright 2020 WGCU. To see more, visit WGCU.

Matthew Smith is a reporter and producer of WGCU’s Gulf Coast Live.
Julie Glenn is the host of Gulf Coast Live. She has been working in southwest Florida as a freelance writer since 2007, most recently as a regular columnist for the Naples Daily News. She began her broadcasting career in 1993 as a reporter/anchor/producer for a local CBS affiliate in Quincy, Illinois. After also working for the NBC affiliate, she decided to move to Parma, Italy where she earned her Master’s degree in communication from the University of Gastronomic Sciences. Her undergraduate degree in Mass Communication is from the University of Missouri at Kansas City.