Listen to Gary and his girlfriend Latoyia Lowe. Audio Producer: Sarah P. Reynolds

Gary Taylor, 47, plays with his kids outside their home in Fresno. More than a year ago, he lost his job at the customer service center of a food bank and had had trouble finding work since. He supports his fiancé, Latoya Lowe, and three kids, aged six, five, and three, with the six hundred dollars he gets from public assistance though he says the money does not cover all of his bills. “I’ll do any job to provide for my family,” Taylor says. “But if I don’t find anything that means I’m on the street.” However, he worries that employers will pass him over for someone younger.

 

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"Included in this group [the underrclass] are individuals who lack training and skills and either experience long-term unemployment or are not members of the labor force, individuals who are engaged in street crime and other forms of aberrant behavior, and families that experience long-term spells of poverty and/or welfare dependency."

- The Truly Disadvantaged: The Inner City, the Underclass, and Public Policy, by William Julius Wilson

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