Andrew Young Center for International Affairs

Working Poor in Georgia Research Project

In 2000 the Brisbane Institute, in collaboration with the Public Policy Center at Clark Atlanta University and Project South, Atlanta, Georgia, was contracted by the Georgia Department of Labor to conduct research on the working poor in Georgia. The goal of the project was two fold: (1) Provide a data base on the working poor for the Department of Labor, and (2) suggest policies to improve the living conditions of Georgia's working poor.

BI researched is entitled:
LIFE IN GEORGIA: CONTEXT AND MEANING FOR THE WORKING POOR

BI's research focused on the quality of life (QOL) among Georgia residents, in Economic Development Regions (EDR) 3, 8, and 9; these EDRs represent both urban and rural Georgia citizens. In each of these EDRs, we examined four selected QOL index measures: health care, childcare, transportation and education. There is widespread belief around the globe that examining the nature of the QOL in an area can greatly provide a more holistic view of the life challenges, opportunities and material and social well being of a people, community, and nation. The QOL in Georgia, as with most states is greatly influenced by the economic development found in various regions of the state, the changing nature of global competition, rising health care costs, changing family structures and reductions in the role of government as service provider for the less fortunate. We identified the following trends: (1) Shrinking size of businesses, (2) Blue Collar Labor Shortages, (3) Changing Labor Force, (4) Aging of the Labor Force, (5) Increase Youth Workforce, (6) Increase Women Workforce, (7) Impact of International Trade Agreements.