Who woulda thunk it?
In 2012, thanks to Republicans ending the tax break Michigan residents can receive for charitable giving, most people predicted that charitable giving would plummet. It wasn’t a risky prediction, of course. It’s common sense. It was a move made by the GOP to pay, in part, for a massive tax break they gave to corporations.
Well, the results are in and, as predicted, the impact is having profound effects on the ability of Michigan’s food pantries to keep up with ever increasing demands on their services. The Detroit Free Press reports in their piece “Families in need find empty shelves at area food pantries”:
[Food pantry] clients…may start noticing something unusual at food pantries: sparse shelves. A flood of funding cuts — including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) — more people in need, rises in food prices and other expenses have pantries in Michigan and across the country bracing for tough times. […]
In Michigan, tax credits for a range of contributions are no longer allowed, including those to food banks, according to the Michigan League for Public Policy — which can mean less monetary donations to food banks.
Detroit-based Gleaners Community Food Bank of Southeastern Michigan estimated $200,000 less in gifts in the last quarter of last year because of the tax credit change, spokeswoman Anne Schenk said.
This is how the Republican’s plan to bolster economic growth in Michigan is impacting those on the bottom part of the economic ladder. While corporations enjoy higher profits thanks to their new tax cuts, middle class Michiganders have seen their taxes go UP and our poorest residents are facing hardship beyond measure. It’s austerity economics played out in its most cruel form. Those who can afford it least are hit hardest while those who have the most now have more thanks to Republican policies.
As out of work residents struggle with the stark choice of buying food and medicine or paying their bills, the Republicans pat themselves on the back for “cutting taxes”.
[CC photo credit: Daniel Case | Wikimedia Commons]