Free cell phones offered to low-income people

Full story: South Florida Sun-Sentinel

More than 56,000 low-income Treasure Coast and Okeechobee County residents can now receive a free cell phone and minutes thanks to a government-subsidized program financed through a portion of most phone users' ...

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Bill Neubauer

West Palm Beach, FL

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#1
Dec 8, 2008
 

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Hey, do "low-income" people (or anybody, actually) really need cell phones?
How realistic is it to envision a choice between paying the phone bill or buying food?
If people are truly low income, they are eligible for food stamps. Food stamps provide $588 a month for a family of four. I, myself, one of those "senile citizens on fixed incomes," provide myself robust health on about $10 or $15 a week worth of healthy fruits and veggies.
Come on, let's be realistic. Aren't we really pampering "low-income people?" Is that necessary in the economic doldrums which everybody is experiencing these days?
How about a touch of realism?

Since: Apr 07

Midway, FL

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#2
Dec 8, 2008
 

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This is ridiculous. Buying food or paying the phone bill? You can get a land line with local for about $25 a month. And why does everyone consider a cell a necessity? Are we totally lost on what a luxury item is?
Eric

Boca Raton, FL

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#3
Dec 8, 2008
 

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You really have to wonder just what problem this solves. Nobody NEEDS a cell phone!
Heather Graham

Rogers, AR

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#4
Dec 9, 2008
 

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Hello.. My name is Heather, My fathers work had cut his overtime so we cant afford a phone
Randy Releford

O Fallon, MO

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#5
Dec 9, 2008
 

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You notice how certain people always get stuff given to them? Poor people get food stamps, housing allowances, free transportation, free medical care, assistance with home phone (lifeline), and now a free cell phone.

Just remember, someone is paying for all of these "freebies".
Deputy Dog

Orange City, FL

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#6
Dec 9, 2008
 

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Can they get on the "Four Free Phones Family Plan"?

One for junior the drug dealer, one for sis the hooker, one for Dad (if we can figure out who he is) and one for mom, the fat, cigarette smoking welfare recepiant.
Colin Pye

Carbonear, Canada

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#7
Dec 10, 2008
 

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Oh please! If you are faced with a 4-figure bill for the wireline phone company to build out the "last mile", the $120/year cost of this program looks like a real bargain. This looks like the "lifeline" service for areas without home phone service or landlines.

If you are waiting for callbacks from job applications, and you don't have a working home phone, what are you going to do? These days, phone service is almost as necessary as a social security number, if you are looking for legitimate employment.

And Deputy Dog, I doubt that your junior drug dealer, or your sister the hooker will do that much business with 68 minutes a month, especially with a minimum call being 1 minute, regardless of the actual time on the line.

At least, when their 68 minutes a month are used up, they can still get through to emergency services with 911, so when someone climbs the bell tower with a gun and food-stamp bullets, the media can follow the police through the swamp to get the story.
TBag

Pompano Beach, FL

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#8
Dec 10, 2008
 

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Colin Pye wrote:
Oh please! If you are faced with a 4-figure bill for the wireline phone company to build out the "last mile", the $120/year cost of this program looks like a real bargain. This looks like the "lifeline" service for areas without home phone service or landlines.
If you are waiting for callbacks from job applications, and you don't have a working home phone, what are you going to do? These days, phone service is almost as necessary as a social security number, if you are looking for legitimate employment.
And Deputy Dog, I doubt that your junior drug dealer, or your sister the hooker will do that much business with 68 minutes a month, especially with a minimum call being 1 minute, regardless of the actual time on the line.
At least, when their 68 minutes a month are used up, they can still get through to emergency services with 911, so when someone climbs the bell tower with a gun and food-stamp bullets, the media can follow the police through the swamp to get the story.
There are so many ignorant posters on these forums. I dropped my land line years ago because the taxes alone were more than the monthly local charges. Poor people can not afford a deposit, cost of phone, etc. for land lines. Maybe one day these people will find themselves in that situation and see what it is really like. They have no idea what it takes to qualify for food stamps, etc. You have to be destitute. They look at everything, why do you think so many are living in the streets and more each day? Forget trying to talk sense to these nubes.
jera francis

Blountstown, FL

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#9
Dec 10, 2008
 
thank u
Phil Wright

Miami, FL

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#10
Dec 15, 2008
 

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Is this the service offered for free on TV for people on food stamps or medicaid? I think it also included $50 month for the bill. I think the name was Service Line or something like that; I have it written down at home.
kris

Virginia Beach, VA

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#11
Dec 16, 2008
 

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your an a**hole dog get a life and leave people alone not everone is like that some people just need a little extra help. but i guess you make to much money and you can by all the nice things some people cant jerkoff
Ignorance

United States

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#12
Dec 17, 2008
 

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Ignorance is Bliss...so they say!!!!!

I am low income...i recieve food stamps...i am 28..was in a horrible car accident a few yrs ago..couldn't walk..amd a single mother...going to school full time.... Here in Florida..we have problems with predator's at night at schools, kidnappers..etc... i NEED to have some sort of communication...they are actually JUST putting up lights arounbd all the campus's...still not enough...it's still very dark! I have a son...need something just in case of emergency! How ignorant and dumb some of you are, only thinking about yourselves, and your own situations!!!! Most of you posting are men anyways...so that right there explains it all!! So obviously u wouldn't be able to understand, seeing the simplicity of your minds...not capable of such thought!! Like i said...IGNORANCE is bliss.... SO THEY SAY!!!!
FedUp

United States

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#13
Dec 17, 2008
 

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This country is turning into the U.S.S.A. I want to vomit every time I see the safelink commercials. This is a true fleecing of the working taxpayer. How many more social programs and free-bees can we come up with? Sorry you guys are down on your luck. But I'm TIRED of having my pockets picked by politicians trying to make life 'fair' for everyone.

Life is NOT fair - and yes, it sucks to not have a phone. I'm sure it complicates work issues. But it is a LUXURY. Besides, I'd like a corporate jet so getting to my sales calls is easier.

If individuals or groups want to help subsidize your existence, then ask them for help. Go to churches, non-profits, or other organizations. It is not the governments job to be your manna from heaven. Besides, this Safelink Wireless is a FOR PROFIT company.

This is not a selfish view. This is a REALISTIC view. Selfish is trying to get something for nothing - which is what I see in some of the posts. "I need", "I want", "I XXXXX". We are all given opportunity in this country. How we plan for and react to life is the bed we make. Got kids and can't afford them? Who's fault is that? I didn't force your poverty on you - and I certainly didn't force you to have kids. Yet, because some cool-aid drinking liberal wants to buy votes, I'm forced to pay for your (bad) decisions or bad luck?

You want selfish? Where is MY hand out? I not only have to work and PAY for my phone, I'm paying for people who don't. Tsk... and you call those that question the sanity of this sham selfish... Oh the irony.
working mom

Spring Hill, FL

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#14
Dec 25, 2008
 

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TBag wrote:
<quoted text>There are so many ignorant posters on these forums. I dropped my land line years ago because the taxes alone were more than the monthly local charges. Poor people can not afford a deposit, cost of phone, etc. for land lines. Maybe one day these people will find themselves in that situation and see what it is really like. They have no idea what it takes to qualify for food stamps, etc. You have to be destitute. They look at everything, why do you think so many are living in the streets and more each day? Forget trying to talk sense to these nubes.
I totally agree! These people (Deputy Dog and the like) have NO idea what they are talking about. I have a College Degree, lost my job a year ago and have applied for literally HUNDREDS of Full-time positions and have still only been able to find part-time work. I have been on the wait list for Childcare assistance for seven months and even though I do get food stamps I make too much money from my part-time job to qualify. I'm a single-mom and don't receive any child support from my College educated ex-husband and if I could even get into the system I would be so thankful for the help. The housing system has a five year wait list in Florida and it's closed so you can't even apply for assistance.
Erika

United States

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#15
Dec 25, 2008
 

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Cell phones suck. They don't work right, and they probably won't be worth cr@p.
djonsie

Debary, FL

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#16
Dec 28, 2008
 

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TBag wrote:
<quoted text>There are so many ignorant posters on these forums. I dropped my land line years ago because the taxes alone were more than the monthly local charges. Poor people can not afford a deposit, cost of phone, etc. for land lines. Maybe one day these people will find themselves in that situation and see what it is really like. They have no idea what it takes to qualify for food stamps, etc. You have to be destitute. They look at everything, why do you think so many are living in the streets and more each day? Forget trying to talk sense to these nubes.


I agree Tbag ...it is very difficult to get food stamps, if it weren't for the suncap program, my disabled mother wouldn't get the $35 a MONTH that feeds her for about two weeks..the rest comes from me, which is difficult.. I have to support my own household by working 50+ hours per week with a 44 mile commute to work because there aren't any jobs in the town we live in. thank God the gas has gone down. Some people just love to complain. I'm a tax payer..tax dollars will have to go somewhere... whether it is food stamps, wellfare or SOCIAL SECURITY AND MEDICARE!!!! Or possibly some gov't officials private jet!! So would you prefer your money go to starving people or to add plush to an already wealthy persons life style? oh yeah, If you don't pay, you can go to jail. and I hear that by the time I'm senior citizen i won't have the opportunity to collecting , so who should be complaining?
mgoliver

Cocoa Beach, FL

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#17
Dec 29, 2008
 

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Bill Neubauer wrote:
Hey, do "low-income" people (or anybody, actually) really need cell phones?
How realistic is it to envision a choice between paying the phone bill or buying food?
If people are truly low income, they are eligible for food stamps. Food stamps provide $588 a month for a family of four. I, myself, one of those "senile citizens on fixed incomes," provide myself robust health on about $10 or $15 a week worth of healthy fruits and veggies.
Come on, let's be realistic. Aren't we really pampering "low-income people?" Is that necessary in the economic doldrums which everybody is experiencing these days?
How about a touch of realism?
just wanted to let you know that yes some people that are low income do need a cell phone. i am a mother of 3 and i live off of ssi and i have a daughter that is a brittle type 1 diabetic. i can't afford a cell phone that comes with a plan from the companies because of the cost. it takes everything that i make to pay my bills and i don't have the extra to pay for a cell phone. i have to be able to get in touch with my daughter at any point or time.

Since: Apr 07

Midway, FL

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#18
Dec 29, 2008
 

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mgoliver wrote:
<quoted text>
just wanted to let you know that yes some people that are low income do need a cell phone. i am a mother of 3 and i live off of ssi and i have a daughter that is a brittle type 1 diabetic. i can't afford a cell phone that comes with a plan from the companies because of the cost. it takes everything that i make to pay my bills and i don't have the extra to pay for a cell phone. i have to be able to get in touch with my daughter at any point or time.
Your mainting contact is the government's responsibility? No wonder we have the problems we do.
USA

AOL

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#19
Dec 29, 2008
 

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mgoliver wrote:
<quoted text>
just wanted to let you know that yes some people that are low income do need a cell phone. i am a mother of 3 and i live off of ssi and i have a daughter that is a brittle type 1 diabetic. i can't afford a cell phone that comes with a plan from the companies because of the cost. it takes everything that i make to pay my bills and i don't have the extra to pay for a cell phone. i have to be able to get in touch with my daughter at any point or time.
Your story is sad...but you made the choice to have three children that you can not afford...and now you want us to pay for your cell phone....you...my dear..is one of the reasons this country is going to hell in a hand basket..
FedUp

United States

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#20
Dec 29, 2008
 

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+100 to USA and MyPerspective.

The inherent problem with man is that he/she always looks out for #1. If there is a way to TAKE something from someone else rather than work for it, if the law allows it, they will take it. Remember the big fat chick at the convention center? WHERE'S MY FEMA CHECK? "My government ain't done nothin' for me"... God does that make me boil.

I have no problem with the government (whether local, state, or federal) helping someone get back on their feet. Social Security, welfare, medicaid... all of these should be available to those who need it to get back to being productive. It should not be a permanent lifestyle or expected 'income'. Unregulated, the masses will take the path of least resistance. It's like feeding stray cats. Feed one, you'll have 5 tomorrow. Feed them, and you'll have 20 the next day. Break the cycle of dependency. Go to your local church, family members, or other non-profit organizations. My guess is, none of them will appreciate a continued dependent lifestyle. Unlike the government, they will eventually want you to move on.

And for the love of God - QUIT HAVING CHILDREN!!!!!!!!

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