SRS endeavors deserve support
The experiences of Lana Reed at the Overland Park SRS offices published in the March 11 Telegram are certainly different from my experiences at the SRS office here in Garden City.
I have been working here with persons who are lacking resources for 14 years. In all that time I have not known of any family or child that received food stamps, medical cards or cash assistance that did so fraudulently. The case workers here go by the rules. They are not wasting taxpayers' dollars. I want to support their efforts to serve people and to do so justly.
If anything, persons are not granted the help who could be receiving it.
a) The lady who in a mental illness flare-up destroyed her birth certificate and all identifying documents cannot receive help because she cannot prove she exists.
b) The family whose political asylum case got denied when they went to renew it after 12 years here will not apply for their two U.S. citizen children. They cannot return to El Salvador for fear of being murdered. For the sake of their children they choose to remain here under the radar. Applying is therefore impossible.
c) The family bilked out of $1,600 by the lawyer James Phillips' scam have lost their window of opportunity to apply for documents because he never filed anything. The parent who is working has no status nor does the older child. The whole salary is therefore seen as supporting only the baby. It is a couple of hundred dollars over the limit for a one-person household. The U.S. citizen child goes hungry with the rest of the family.
These are just a few examples of persons for whom our local case workers have tried to find help. When it became impossible to do so, they were honest in saying there was no hope.
Please support our SRS staff and do not let the article bring them under suspicion.
Furthermore, in my experience there are many families of mixed immigration status who do not ever apply for food stamps for their citizen children. They do not want to feel like they are living off our government and/or fear it might cause them problems in the future. We need no more provisions written by Representative Kinzer or anyone else. Those in place are more than adequate.
SISTER JANICE THOME, O.P.