Advocating for ALICE: The Need
In Frederick today, at least 37% of all households struggle to afford basic household necessities, falling below the survival budget threshold, because the cost of living outpaces wage increases. Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed (ALICE) families are often forced to choose between paying for food, medical expenses, childcare, broadband access, healthcare, and rent.
The ALICE Report for Frederick County has changed the way that UWFC approaches community needs and words to solve them. The report provides critical information about how financial stability is spread across Frederick County demographics.
We welcome you to join us as we drive toward social justice by embracing diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging for every person in every community by supporting and advocating on behalf of ALICE families.
Our 2023 Initiatives
Read more about our 2023 Advocacy Platform Below or click here to download a PDF copy of the 2023 Advocacy Positions
UWFC is calling this year the Year of Transportation for Frederick County. With so many of our Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed (ALICE) families struggling to afford the cost of basic necessities, including transportation, UWFC supports our existing transportation systems and advocates for the development of new and complimentary transportation solutions. We’re convinced that transportation is the key to many other positive outcomes for ALICE families.
Providing access to highspeed internet, implementing programs to expand digital literacy, and expanding digital opportunities are a must. UWFC works to ensure that ALICE households will have access to broadband services, regardless of their ZIP code. We are a proponent of federal, state, and local governmental programs which aim to shrink the digital divide.
UWFC proudly stands by initiatives that support those who have served, regardless of age, race, ethnicity, gender, disability status, etc. We also advocate for more accurate data collection by the U.S. Census Bureau for veterans who have been historically undercounted, including (but not limited to) people experiencing homelessness, people of color, individuals who identify as LGBTQ+, and people in low-income and hard-to-count geographic areas.
Using a collective impact model, UWFC’s Prosperity Center employs a holistic, integrated approach to improving ALICE households’ financial security. The Prosperity Center functions as a one-stop hub giving community members access to a wide range of services, including pathways to homeownership, independent transportation, and career advancement. Since 1938, UWFC has fought hard for our neighbors in need. We will tirelessly continue to do so.
UWFC is in favor of initiatives which promote construction of affordable rental units and homes for sale, including mixed-use, high-density housing, and land trust housing. These types of housing are ideal for ALICE households including veterans, working families, seniors, and those struggling with disabilities.
We encourage legislative plans which support ongoing and improved access to healthcare services, including all immunizations for all ages. Since COVID-19 is likely here to stay, we support continued access to vaccines, testing, and at-home test kits. With the onset of Mpox and other circulating diseases, new systems must also be developed to ensure that ALICE households have continued access to quality healthcare, immunizations, and health information at the same rate as their wealthier neighbors, regardless of their ability to pay.