About: Raymond J Castro

Raymond J Castro
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Raymond Castro is New Jersey Policy Perspective's senior policy analyst.

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Posts by Raymond J Castro

No, New Jersey’s Poorest Aren’t Offered a ‘Very Large’ Package of Benefits

The Department of Human Services Commissioner says families in WorkFirst NJ are offered a ”very large” package of benefits from other programs. But that’s just not the case.


Op-Ed: New Jersey Should Give All Families a Shot at Success By Boosting Basic Assistance

One of the main causes for deep child poverty is the erosion of basic assistance to New Jersey families facing the biggest economic challenges.


2017 Budget Testimony: Reject Estate Tax Repeal & Boost Assistance for Poor Families

A tax cut that benefits just the wealthy few is glaringly out of step with budget priorities of New Jersey, will make it harder to restore earlier funding cuts and will make it nearly impossible to do much to tackle some of the state’s other big problems, like growing poverty.


Increasing TANF Assistance to New Jersey Families is Long Overdue

The TANF cash benefit, which is $424 a month for a family of three, has not been increased in 29 years. Ronald Reagan was still president, and the Bangles’ “Walk Like an Egyptian” was the top hit of the day.


Repealing TANF’s ‘Family Cap’ Makes Moral and Economic Sense

Recent national research has shown that these caps do not affect parental choices as intended but instead penalize the babies, who are denied cash assistance, and the families, which are driven deeper into poverty.


Lost Opportunities for New Jersey’s Children

Dwindling cash assistance through the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program has harmed families and children, but New Jersey can reverse course.


New Jersey Should Apply for Local SNAP Waivers to Prevent Needless Hunger

For the state to willingly worsen the plight of struggling New Jerseyans is an indefensible policy that borders on the immoral. Legislators should do everything in their power to force the state to reverse course.


Two Key Decisions on SNAP in New Jersey Will Increase Hunger for Vulnerable Residents

SNAP serves the most vulnerable people in our state, and further cuts to the program will continue to push these families further to the brink.


New Jersey’s Middle Class is Shrinking & Poverty is Rising – But We Can Reverse the Tide

We can start make a real difference if we at least eliminate those state policies and actions that are acting making poverty worse in New Jersey.


New Jersey’s Decision to Allow Time Limits on SNAP Will Cause Severe Hunger

Officials emphasized that the termination was a federal requirement and beyond New Jersey’s control. But that is only part of the story.


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