Putting People First: St. Louis Direct Cash Assistance Program

Putting People First: St. Louis Direct Cash Assistance Program


We are in a critical transition out of the pandemic. We know recovering from the fallout will impact us for years to come. Right now, we have the opportunity to tell Mayor Jones and the Board of Alderman to invest in the needs of our community.

Last year, Missouri Jobs with Justice helped pass a nationally innovative program that invested over $5 million in direct cash stimulus to low-income families. In the first round of funding, our community came together and identified the top priority for the funds: putting cash directly in the hands of residents.

MO JWJ volunteers texted and called residents, hearing the same response:

  • “The money came just in time.”
  • “As a senior citizen on a fixed budget, this check helped in ways that no way anyone could imagine. If the payments could have been a little bit higher it would have made a huge difference.”
  • One resident felt sick and had to take weeks of unpaid leave from work, putting them behind on their bills as they cared for themselves and their children.
  • Another resident did not have the money to fix their car during the pandemic and had to walk to work from the metro during the cold winter months.

Except here in St. Louis, we showed up, shaped the policy, and kept talking about what our families needed. As a result, more than 9,000 of our St. Louis neighbors received $500 to buy groceries, fix their car, finally buy a new pair of glasses, or simply give their kids a nice Christmas.