Those most in need are on the chopping block


Ramsey County just approved the 2010-2011 budget and it is with disappointment that I see yet another budget that takes away from those most in need. Is it the correlation between those most in need often holding the least political leverage that enables such decisions to go through?

Minnesota is facing major cuts to its GAMC program and Ramsey County just approved a budget that will make cuts to health and human services, including children’s mental health, programming for developmental disabilities and child-protection services. Fortunately the improvements to the Kellar Golf Course and clubhouse will go ahead as planned. In all fairness, it is probably unfair of me to take a stab at the golf course as I do understand the predicament facing Ramsey County as well as the state as a whole. All communities have taken a hit from state cuts. But it is also not fair that those who have very little lose the most, or that our childrens’ health and welfare is put to the sidelines.

Naive as I may be, I still understand that the current economic situation necessitates program cuts. But I do ask that those cuts be made only after considering our moral obligation and the long-term consequences and returns. Investing in our children yields substantial long-term economic return, but beyond that it is a moral obligation that we do not punish those who are unable to fight for their right and who have played no part in getting us into this economic disaster.