“Getting involved in the community opens your eyes to things you’ve never seen before,” shared State Rep. Dan Carter (R- 2) as he stood in front of local business leaders at “Leadership Danbury,” an annual event organized by the Danbury Chamber of Commerce and held at Western Connecticut State University on January 21. Rep. Carter, who represents Danbury, Bethel, Newtown and Redding and serves on the Legislature’s General Law, Education, and Finance, Revenue & Bonding Committees, spoke at the meeting to discuss current legislative issues and explain his role in Hartford, as well as promote advocacy for initiatives that help the community.
“Advocacy on the part of local business leaders is more important than ever,” said Rep. Carter. “The Leadership Danbury event is an example of what all communities should do to help business leaders engage in their communities and help understand and solve many of the issues in our state.”
An example of one of these initiatives is a program administered through the United Way that strives to address financial hardship in Connecticut, especially the adversity suffered by those recognized as part of Connecticut’s Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed (ALICE) demographic.
ALICE earners live in 1 out 4 households across the state and make an income that is just above the Federal Poverty Level but just below the basic cost-of-living threshold. This hardworking 25% portion our population is struggling to make ends meet, yet extremely vital to the state’s overall social and economic well-being. In fact, 30-39% of residents in Danbury alone are ALICE-identified, or struggling with poverty.
“Through the efforts of the Danbury Chamber, not only do business leaders gain valuable leadership insights, but they learn more about the rich history of Danbury,” said Rep. Carter. “Through the understanding of the history of Danbury and its people, leaders gain a better understanding of current trends and the issues today.”
Please log onto http://alice.ctunitedway.org to see how you can help United Way, and how United Way can help you. Call 2-1-1 for around-the-clock access to a range of health and human services that could make a difference in terms of housing, food, child care, health care and transportation for countless ALICE households.