Middlesex United Way: 1 in 3 Connecticut residents can’t afford basic necessities

By Kevin Wilhelm September 14,2018

The updated 2018 Connecticut United Way’s ALICE Report documents the challenges facing ALICE families throughout our state, and identifies trends that affect ALICE’s ability to achieve financial security. In Middlesex County, there are 16,834 households who fall under the ALICE criteria, approximately 25 percent of all Middlesex County households.

One of these trends discovered is that even though Connecticut may be known as a state with one of the highest “per capita” incomes, the fastest growing jobs right now are the ones with the lowest pay. Also, there has been a rise in what is being called the “gig economy” — short-term site-specific jobs that are have limited job security, few or no benefits, fluctuating hours and unreliable wages. These trends are significantly impacting our state’s residents, and leading to more and more ALICE households.

ALICE families often make too much money to be eligible for many social assistance programs, yet make too little to get by comfortably, and are forced to make sacrifices that can have long-term consequences.

Many ALICE families will opt to eat meals based on price rather than nutrition. Many will avoid going to the doctor or dentist for preventative visits, as they fear being unable to cover their medical bills. Some families will have a parent stay home, rather than work, because the cost of child care makes working unrealistic.

Continue reading: New Haven Register