A United Way acronym which stands for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed, represents the growing number of individuals and families who are working, but unable to afford basic necessities. These families are struggling – earning too little to make ends meet, but sometimes too much to qualify for support.
By comparing real incomes with real expenses, the United Way ALICE Project reveals the stark reality that income falls short of basic needs for 42.3% of residents of Northern New York. With low wages and no savings, these Americans have no ability to meet their current needs, or to adequately prepare for the future. These families are particularly vulnerable to financial shocks like job loss, unexpected medical expenses, and natural disasters.
UWNNY’s Community Impact Plan targets solutions to address the shocking mismatch between a family’s income and the real-time cost of living in each county. This work provides a very real glimpse of the devastating impact that daily struggle has on an ALICE household. And when we shine a light on this unrecognized group, we also see that the instability of such a huge proportion of workers is destabilizing our local economies, our communities, and all our lives.
United Way of Northern New York’s mission is to measurably improve the lives of all residents of Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence Counties through leadership, training and funding.