My partner and I have lived in Lewiston since 2015. I believe it’s time someone speaks up about the Lewiston General Assistance Program. This became obvious a short time after we moved here to Lewiston.

I have a reference point because I received General Assistance when I lived Portland. And, when I received General Assistance benefits I needed to do the Workfare program because I was able bodied and could work, so I worked at the Preble Street soup kitchen.

The way I interpret the rules for General Assistance from both the city and state rules is that people have to work for their benefits.

I just don’t think that’s happening, and I think those who participate in Workfare could help clean up our city.

The streets are a constant mess with trash, sidewalks need shoveling, Kennedy Park stairs need shoveling, and the list could go on and on.

The city is constantly concerned about budgets, and Workfare participants could help provide hours of work to ease the budget.

The program is broken, and people receiving benefits should work for their benefits.

Apparently, Lewiston is more concerned with hiring two police officers to police Lisbon Street for people smoking cigarettes. This is the priority rather than addressing people receiving benefits and not doing Workfare.

Benefits equal work. The Workfare program’s intention is to work for benefits and look for employment opportunities.

This mess of Lewiston needs to be cleaned up.

Michael Tetreault, Lewiston

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