OPED: In Texas, Everyone Deserves a Fighting Chance

This weekend, we contributed a piece to the Austin American-Statesman’s legislative series. You can read the full oped below, which originally ran in the Statesman on Sunday, Dec. 9: Sarah Campsey’s children are her world. She’d sacrifice anything to give them the best life she can. Three years ago, Sarah had to choose between keeping […]

OPED: Why Not Train Instead of Test?

This week, the Austin American-Statesman ran an oped I wrote about the flawed legislation filed that would require welfare and unemployment benefits applicants to be drug tested. Instead of going down this costly and unnecessary route, we should be focusing on creating tools to allow Texas families to lift themselves out of poverty and get […]

High Youth Unemployment is Unaffordable for Texas and the Nation

Working for a Better Texas

By Andrea Mayo In 2011, nine percent of Texas teenagers age 16 to 19 were neither in school nor in the workforce.  Unless Texas takes action, these young people will likely face substantial personal challenges to success and impose a large cost on taxpayers in the short- and long-term. According to a new KIDS COUNT report […]

$11/Hr Is The Least We Can Do For Better Jobs

On Tuesday, the Travis County Commissioners Court passed a “living wage” requirement for county tax incentives designed to lure jobs to the area. Travis County, after two years of study on this issue, valued dignity and shared prosperity. Under the new requirement, all employees would earn at least $11/hour, and that includes construction workers and […]

Texas’ Income Gap Is the 7th Highest in the U.S.

Dick Lavine, Senior Fiscal Analyst at the Center for Public Policy Priorities

The income gap between the Texas families at the top and bottom of the income ladder is the 7th highest in the nation, according to a new report by two national research organizations. The average household income for the richest one-fifth of Texas households is 8.6 times greater than the average for the poorest one-fifth.  […]

OP-ED: The Darker Side of Texas’ Job Market

Don Baylor

By Don Baylor & Leslie Helmcamp This Labor Day we hear that the Texas unemployment rate has remained below the national average. We also hear that Texas has added new jobs every month for the past two years. What we don’t hear is that 1 in 7 working families in Texas lives below the poverty line. […]

Adult Basic Education Innovation, Training and Policy

Leslie Helmcamp

The adult basic education system can be a bright spot for many Texans looking to better their career prospects, find stable employment, and earn a thriving wage. In fact, Texas’ adult basic education providers—anchored in local nonprofits and community colleges— are moving the state forward in getting adult learners into higher wage work by braiding […]

Turning a “D” Into an “A” at Texas Colleges and Universities

Texas’ colleges and universities just received their report cards and the grades are mixed. While Texas leads much of the country on transparency and accountability, our two-year institutions made low grades for student access and success. Even though Texas’ four-year institutions made a satisfactory grade on student access and success, just under half (49 percent) […]