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University of Wisconsin–Madison
Poverty-related issues in the news, from the Institute for Research on Poverty

Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program

Northeast states cut heating aid to poor, By Andrew Miga (AP), December 11, 2011, Boston Globe: “Mary Power is 92 and worried about surviving another frigid New England winter because deep cuts in federal home heating assistance benefits mean she probably can’t afford enough heating oil to stay warm. She lives in a drafty trailer in Boston’s West Roxbury neighborhood and gets by on $11,148 a year in pension and Social Security benefits. Her heating aid help this year will drop from $1,035 to $685. With rising heating oil prices, it probably will cost her more than $3,000 for enough oil to keep warm unless she turns her thermostat down to 60 degrees, as she plans. ‘I will just have to crawl into bed with the covers over me and stay there,’ said Power, a widow who worked as a cashier and waitress until she was 80. ‘I will do what I have to do.’ Thousands of poor people across the Northeast are bracing for a difficult winter with substantially less home heating aid coming from the federal government…”