The Social Crisis in America
“They’ve taken us back to the dark ages”
By Zac Corrigan and Shannon Jones, 12 January 2016
At a recent demonstration residents described the horrific conditions they are facing and demanded that state officials be held accountable for the man-made disaster.
By Andre Damon, 9 January 2016
For millions of people, the dream of winning the lottery has replaced the “American Dream” of living a decent life.
“They just want to score some points with this incident and then leave us.”
By our reporters, 7 January 2016
Despite constant coverage of the recent San Bernardino shootings in the mainstream media, little attention has been given to the city’s widespread poverty and social distress.
By Douglas Lyons, 6 January 2016
2014 has eclipsed all other recorded years as the most deadly, with nearly 48,000 drug overdose deaths.
By Tom Eley, 4 January 2016
America’s super-rich and giant corporations hide trillions of dollars in order to avoid paying taxes on their earnings.
By Shannon Jones, 29 December 2015
As usual in such disasters, hardest hit were working class communities where less well constructed homes as well as trailers were flattened by unusual December tornadoes.
By Andre Damon, 24 December 2015
The official promotion of the “Christmas spirit” collides against the reality of ever-expanding war, violence and social misery that dominate capitalist society.
By George Gallanis, 24 December 2015
Following the incident, Dalene Bowden was placed on unpaid leave and then received a letter days later issuing the termination of her position.
By Matthew Brennan and Lawrence Porter, 16 December 2015
Behind the declaration by the newly-elected mayor is a deep-going political crisis over the poisoning of nearly 100,000 residents.
By Fred Mazelis, 14 December 2015
A new book provides a case study on the nature of the “school reform” movement and the attacks on public education.
By David Walsh, 12 December 2015
The decline of the middle classes in America has profound and revolutionary implications.
By Andre Damon, 11 December 2015
A study published Wednesday by the Pew Research Center called the collapse of middle-income households in the US “a demographic shift that could signal a tipping point.”
By Nancy Hanover, 8 December 2015
A closer look at the billionaire’s announcement that he and his wife are donating 99 percent of their Facebook shares reveals that the charitable emperor “has no clothes”—and says a lot about the financial elite, the media and the state of America.
By John Marion, 7 December 2015
The fire moved so quickly in the overcrowded building that four people, including a pregnant woman, were unable to get out alive.
By Philip Guelpa, 4 December 2015
A current museum exhibit looks at the history of housing for the working class, and leaves much unsaid or distorted.
Thousands laid off as employment crisis deepens in Appalachia
By Naomi Spencer, 26 November 2015
In Ashland, Kentucky, 1,100 employees of AK Steel received notice that they would be laid off in mid-December, just before Christmas.
By Kate Randall, 21 November 2015
In January 2015, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development counted 564,708 homeless in the US, a quarter of them children.
By Niles Williamson, 17 November 2015
Among the chief warmongers are the New York Times’ Roger Cohen and the Washington Post’s Richard Cohen, who jumped at the opportunity to call for the massive expansion of US-led military intervention.
By Matthew Taylor, 14 November 2015
Global Ministries Foundation has come under federal investigation for the deplorable living conditions at its Eureka Gardens housing complex.
By David Brown, 13 November 2015
Increasingly, children in the United States are being charged and incarcerated for serious crimes they have no competency to commit.
By James Brewer, 11 November 2015
State and local officials ignored health warnings in regard to the water supply.
By Norisa Diaz, 9 November 2015
The enthusiasm of the Brown administration for the legislation is based not solely on the autonomy and compassion it can grant the terminally ill, but on its cost-saving potential.
By Josh Varlin, 7 November 2015
While the US economy added more jobs in October than in previous months, the great majority of new jobs were in low-wage sectors of the economy.
By Andre Damon, 5 November 2015
Police murders have continued unabated, as has the defense of killer cops by the political establishment, from local prosecutors to the Obama administration.
By Joseph Kishore, 4 November 2015
The mortality figures reflect a catastrophic decline in the social position of the working class resulting from the protracted decay of American capitalism.
By David Brown, 29 October 2015
The decades-long stagnation of wages in the US has left millions of workers unable to start a family or buy a house.
By Naomi Spencer, 27 October 2015
Local governments and schools across West Virginia are making deep reductions as the coal industry continues to contract and the state imposes a fresh round of cuts.
By Fred Mazelis, 26 October 2015
Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio’s concept of affordability applies, at best, only to the top 10 percent of the city’s population.
By Naomi Spencer, 26 October 2015
As the coal industry has hemorrhaged jobs, state and local social services have been slashed and inequality has soared.
A legacy of poverty and austerity in New Orleans
By Tom Hall, 26 October 2015
The “rebuilding” process in New Orleans has left the city’s working class more impoverished than ever before.
The privatization of New Orleans schools
By Tom Hall, 24 October 2015
Charter school plans that were already well advanced were quickly acted upon in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.
Destruction of public housing and forced exodus of workers
By E.P. Bannon, 23 October 2015
New Orleans had a pre-hurricane population of 484,700. Today, it is 384,300, a 21 percent decline.
The catastrophe unfolds
By E.P. Bannon, 22 October 2015
Thousands of survivors remained trapped inside the flood-ravaged city without access to food, water or clothing.
By James Brewer, 10 October 2015
The action by the state of Michigan is a tacit admission that the city’s population has been subjected to lead poisoning for 17 months.
By Jill Lux, 10 October 2015
A new UCLA study reveals that more than 772,000 older Californians fall into the category of the “hidden poor.”
By Philip Guelpa, 8 October 2015
Democratic mayor Bill de Blasio has announced a housing program that will benefit developers and lead to the displacement of working class residents.
By Nick Barrickman, 3 October 2015
The total net worth for the multi-billionaires on the list set new records, displacing last year’s all-time high of $2.29 trillion.
By Douglas Lyons, 30 September 2015
Wolf proposes to eliminate pensions for workers making over $75,000 yearly.
By Kevin Martinez, 28 September 2015
The city has pledged a paltry $100 million toward reducing homelessness, most of which will go to the police to drive out homeless encampments.
By James Brewer and Lawrence Porter, 26 September 2015
The head of the Virginia Tech university team that conducted a survey of Flint’s water toxicity warned residents not to trust the government's claims that city water is safe to drink.
By Steve Light and Allen Whyte, 24 September 2015
Workers and tenants in the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood are confronting a determined effort to drive them out of their building so it can be transformed into high-rent apartments.
By Shannon Jones, 18 September 2015
The settlement announced Thursday in the GM ignition recall scandal is a travesty that allows the company to get off virtually scot-free for the criminal cover-up of a deadly safety defect.
“I believe GM murdered my daughter”
By Shannon Jones, 18 September 2015
The World Socialist Web Site spoke with Leo and Mary Ruddy, parents of Kelly Erin Ruddy who died in the crash of her Cobalt in January 2010
By Isaac Finn, 16 September 2015
According to a recent report, it is impossible for a worker making New York’s minimum wage to find an affordable apartment in any New York City neighborhood.
By Kevin Martinez and Fred Mazelis, 12 September 2015
Poverty and hopelessness are the main contributors to increases in violent crime.
By Clare Hurley, 9 September 2015
The Democratic mayor is taking more aggressive measures to close down homeless encampments.
By Clare Hurley, 9 September 2015
The WSWS spoke with several residents of Pamoja House Next Step Shelter, a 200-bed men’s shelter in Brooklyn.
By Evan Blake, 9 September 2015
Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, keenly aware that the city would lose a civil trial brought by the Gray family, is seeking to mitigate further exposures of the corrupt Baltimore Police Department.
By Nick Rodriguez and J. Cooper, 7 September 2015
Nearly 30,000 homes will go to auction in the nation’s largest municipal property tax foreclosure.
By Shannon Jones, 1 September 2015
Residents of the Michigan city describe a continuing nightmare caused by astronomical water rates combined with foul smelling, discolored drinking water.
By Trent Novak, 29 August 2015
Individuals seeking mental health treatment are twice as likely to have their claims denied by insurers than patients filing claims related to traditional medical procedures.
By Eric London, 29 August 2015
The following is an on-the-spot report on social conditions in working-class areas hit hard by deindustrialization in the US state of Indiana.
By Joseph Kishore, 27 August 2015
The tragedy that struck the city of New Orleans, along with coastal areas from Florida to Texas, was not simply a natural disaster, but a social and political crime.
By Adam Mclean, 27 August 2015
About one in 20 children in California, home to over 100 billionaires, is homeless.
By Philip Guelpa, 26 August 2015
The acute shortage of affordable housing in New York City continues to worsen while the prices of luxury residences for the city’s elite rise to unprecedented heights.
By Evan Blake, 24 August 2015
The growth of extreme poverty is rooted in decades of deindustrialization in America’s former manufacturing hubs.
By Naomi Spencer, 21 August 2015
Central Appalachia’s largest city has seen at least 520 drug overdoses since the beginning of the year, and 34 people have died.
By Gabriel Black, 20 August 2015
Amazon’s white-collar employees are routinely expected to work 80 hour workweeks and are penalized for any lost productivity, including from pregnancy or serious illness.
By Shannon Jones, 20 August 2015
Food banks and food pantries report that millions of families are still making difficult choices between eating and paying for other necessities
By Kristina Betinis, 14 August 2015
The nation’s third largest school district has released an annual budget slashing jobs and spending, and demanding concessions from teachers.
By Tom Hall, 22 July 2015
Three million more American children were in poverty in 2013 than at the height of the 2008 financial crisis.
By Gabriel Black, 21 July 2015
The enormous growth in heroin use, particularly among young people, reflects the depth of the social crisis in America.
“People deserve respect whether they can pay their bills or not”
By Seraphine Collins, 8 July 2015
In this video, Mamie Brown, a Detroit preschool teacher, describes the experience of having her water shut off.
By Sandy English, 6 July 2015
The average sale price of an apartment in the New York City borough of Manhattan, the home of Wall Street, is now $1.87 million.
By Andre Damon, 4 July 2015
The vast sums of money pocketed by bank executives are bound up with activities that range from borderline legal to flagrantly illegal.
By David Brown, 29 June 2015
While the average worker made the same in 2014 as they did in 2009, CEO compensation at top companies rose by 54.3 percent.
By Philip Guelpa, 29 June 2015
Democrats and Republicans agreed to a deal which leaves essentially unchanged existing rent regulations and tax breaks that favor landlords and developers.
With appointment of Kenneth Feinberg to oversee cuts
By Andre Damon, 20 June 2015
The White House said Wednesday that it will grant long-time Washington fixer Kenneth Feinberg the power to unilaterally slash the benefits of retirees in multiemployer pension funds.
By David Walsh, 19 June 2015
The impact of endless war and militarism on backward layers of the population in the US is a central driving force behind horrific episodes like the Charleston bloodbath.
By David Brown, 17 June 2015
Several observers have pointed to signs of dry rot in the wooden support beams exposed by the collapse, possibly due to inadequate waterproofing.
By Thomas Gaist, 12 June 2015
The military drills come as US special operations forces prepare to conduct “Realistic Military Training” in American cities, towns and rural areas throughout the South and West.
By Andre Damon, 10 June 2015
The young man’s imprisonment and torture stand as an indictment of America’s criminal “justice” system.
By Andre Damon, 8 June 2015
Despite polls showing overwhelming popular opposition to social inequality, these sentiments find no genuine expression in official US politics.
By Nick Barrickman and Trent Novak, 4 June 2015
The desperate conditions in Baltimore are the product of decades of pro-business policies pursued by the Democrats at every level of government.
By Charles Abelard, 30 May 2015
The response of state and federal authorities has thus far been minimal, leaving thousands of the displaced to fend for themselves.
By Philip Guelpa, 23 May 2015
Bill de Blasio’s housing proposal opens the door to privatizing public housing while squeezing more money from low-income residents.
By Tom Hall, 21 May 2015
Questions are mounting over police claims that biker gangs were solely responsible for the gunfight that killed nine people.
By Nick Barrickman, 20 May 2015
While the police murder of Freddie Gray was the trigger, the scope of the social anger that erupted in Baltimore was fueled by decades of economic decay in the once booming industrial port city.
By Tom Carter, 19 May 2015
The bloody shootout between rival biker gangs and police in Waco, Texas on May 17 is a symptom of an unhealthy society.
By Jerry White, 12 May 2015
The relentless fixation on race is aimed at preventing any serious examination of the deep class divisions in American society, which are at the root of police violence.
By Douglas Lyons and Samuel Davidson, 6 May 2015
Millions of dollars in state funding cuts to York schools have translated to over $1,000 lost per student, resulting in teacher layoffs and cuts to classes and programs.
Six years into “economic recovery”
By Douglas Lyons and Samuel Davidson, 4 May 2015
Like many cities its size in the US state of Pennsylvania, York is mired in unemployment, low-paying jobs and poverty.
By Zaida Green, 25 April 2015
Some 73 percent of people enrolled in public welfare programs, including food assistance, come from families with at least one member who is employed.
By Jerry White, 21 April 2015
Detroit officials are getting ready to cut off water to as many as 73,000 households.
By Lawrence Porter, 21 April 2015
An impoverished single mother of four on Detroit’s east side was arrested after two of her children were found dead inside a freezer.
By Lawrence Porter, 21 April 2015
The Michigan Kids Count project director spoke to the WSWS about the devastating growth of child poverty throughout the state in the wake of the 2008 economic crash.
By Jerry White, 8 April 2015
Rodney Todd and his children were the apparent victims of carbon monoxide poisoning from a generator they were using after the local utility company cut off power to the financially struggling family.
By Seraphine Collins, 8 April 2015
Recent exhibitions and ongoing projects examine human rights abuses throughout the US prison system, focusing on the sentencing of juveniles to life in prison without parole.
By Naomi Spencer, 3 April 2015
Washtenaw County, Michigan is held up as a “knowledge economy” model for recovery in the state, but a new study finds 37 percent of residents cannot make ends meet.
By Trent Novak, 25 March 2015
With the winter “hypothermia season” not set to officially end until April, the number of families requiring shelter has already exceeded official expectations.
By Andre Damon, 23 March 2015
In few places anywhere on the globe is the systematized, ruthless cruelty of the ruling class—facilitated by all factions of the political establishment—so flagrantly on display as in Detroit.
By Kevin Martinez, 23 March 2015
After removing tents and shelters from the park, authorities also want to ban sleeping in boxes, tents and pods on city streets.
By Andre Damon, 21 March 2015
As many as 28,000 households in America’s poorest large city face having their water service shut off.
By Shelley Connor, 17 March 2015
The surge in food stamp use coincides with a sharp decline in the percentage of people working full-time.
By Nick Barrickman, 16 March 2015
Without subsidies, the typical family of four in the bottom fifth tier of households spends 80 percent of its yearly earnings on housing.
By Evan Blake, 10 March 2015
The findings of a new report serve as a barometer of the current conditions of life in America, and expose one of the many symptoms of the decay of capitalist society.
By Evan Blake, 21 February 2015
There have been 576 fatalities from house fires so far this year, often caused by the use of unsafe heating methods to reduce costs amidst record cold weather.
By Jeff Lusanne and Evan Blake, 20 February 2015
A record cold spell across the Eastern half of the United States has caused dozens of deaths among the most vulnerable sections of society: the homeless, the poor, and the elderly.
By Kevin Martinez, 20 February 2015
Over 80,000 people languish in solitary confinement in the country’s penitentiaries, sometimes for years or decades at a time.
By Khara Sikhan, 19 February 2015
The source of the fire is not yet known, though house fires are often caused by space heaters or other unsafe heating devices.