Arkansas City Pays Homeless People Minimum Wage to Clean Up Trash

In Little Rock, Ark., homeless people are getting paid minimum wage to pick up trash as part of a trial program being rolled out in the state seeking to help people transition from homelessness.

According to a local CBS station, the effort is called the Bridge to Work program.

The program reportedly formed shortly after Little Rock passed a measure last month to pay homeless people in the city minimum wage to help collect trash. Minimum wage in the state was increased to $9.25 back in January.

The program is reportedly being operated by the local Canvas Community Church. Those participating in the program can work up to fours hours each day and up to three days per week.

“I’m basically trying to change my life,” Alexander Williams, who works as a supervisor and driver for the program, told the local station.

Williams is also working to transition from being homeless, according to the local outlet.

The Public Works Department is reportedly paying $80,000 in funding to the program, which is slated to operate from April 1 to September 27.

Last year, Mark Stodola, the mayor of Little Rock, also announced that the city became the first in the state to end veteran homelessness.

“When we say we have ‘effectively ended’ veteran homelessness, that means that we have a sustainable, systematic response in place that ensures homelessness is prevented whenever possible, or is otherwise a rare, brief, and one-time experience,” Stodola said in a release announcing the news back in December.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development said Arkansas had “an estimated 2,712 experiencing homelessness on any given day” as of January 2018.

Source: The Hill