Long ago in 2017 when welfare reform was not on the national agenda and before the new Child Tax Credit was passed into law, we spoke with sociologist, poverty expert and author Kathy Edin ($2 a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America) and DC social entrepreneur Tom McDougall of 4P Foods about poverty in America and how our current systems – political, social, economic – keep poor people from succeeding. Edin shares stunning statistics and anecdotes about her deep work on poverty in our country. “The idea that you can shame people off of dependency is actually not consistent with research, so maybe we should try something else. When it comes down to it, what people seem to want more than anything else is dignity… but a lot of our social policies systematically deny people that,” she says. Tom’s local work reflects the national picture. “We can’t talk about fixing the food system unless we talk about money and politics… subsidies… institutional racism… the history of farming. … If we move the needle just a tad on food equity, it means we’re moving a lot of other needles along the way,” he believes.