There are lots of conversations happening on the various pieces of our special report into San Diego County’s social welfare safety net. We’d love it if you’d chime in with your thoughts. Here’s a quick roundup:

  • Make sure to read socalgal‘s account of her experience applying for aid. Here’s how it starts:

    Your report of the gaps in the County’s programs for the needy is one that has needed to be told for a very long time. I am also a person who sought assistance, one of the many who was denied benefits at a time when I had nothing else. Although my health problems have not yet reached the magnitude of those experienced by Michele Quemuel, I believe it is only a matter of time before my lack of medical/dental care has a profound and irreversible impact on my life.

  • Reader zollner responded to the county’s anti-fraud measures:

    Seems this program in San Diego goes along with the food stamp program in that the public officials make it very difficult for needy families to get the help they need. The pols in this county are more worried about getting ripped off then concern about hungry children.

  • In response to pieces from our lengthy interviews with the county supervisors, reader dylanmann said:

    Kudos to the Supervisors for their candid and honest answers. Now I know who to vote against.

  • obLane responded to this story:

    these politicians are so brazen – so open – about how little compassion they have, that its disgusting. Yeah, the idea is to get people off the program and you can’t measure success by how many people are signed up. But you can measure failure by how many people aren’t signed up, and how many more people are in need now than have been over the entire history of social welfare. We are in a recession, and more people are going to need some temporary help than before.

  • Reader paulflorez‘s thoughts about whether or not the county’s poorest residents have a choice to get the help they need:

    They choose to forgo healthcare just like I choose to forgo buying a multi-million dollar mansion.

  • Readers in the comments on this post brought in some of the larger, national debate about healthcare costs, but reader slyone adds this thought:

    I would be willing to pay higher taxes to have better public health in San Diego County because I believe healthcare is a basic human right.

  • The reality is that a family working at current state minimum wage standards and living in San Diego County needs to work 140 hours per week per household to just make rent and utilities. The FACT of the matter is that these people are not the free-loaders conservative Republicans make them out to be to the cheers of their elitist supporters.”

  • Reader Mateo asked:

    why should anyone be surprised that San Diego County has no safety net for the less fortunate of its residents?

    This philosophy goes back decades and is perpetuated by the incumbent Supervisors.

Please, chime in. Add your voice to these conversations, or drop me a line at


Dagny Salas

Dagny Salas was web editor at Voice of San Diego from 2010 to 2013. She was an investigative fellow at VOSD from 2009 to 2010.

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