Welfare recipients have reason to celebrate

BOSTON (WWLP) – For people struggling to survive in the Commonwealth, the State Department of Transitional Assistance offers them a bit of hope. Shari Cole had to leave her previous job because the travel was just too much for her and her son. After having a difficult time finding a new job without a college degree, Cole asked the Department of Transitional Assistance for help.

“I was struggling to find a job for about six months and then I decided to go back to college to get that degree and that’s when transitional assistance stepped in and helped me with financing,” said Cole.

She is is one of 254 other Massachusetts welfare recipients that were recognized at the State House for enrolling into college, completing job training, or even better – landing a job.

Department Commissioner Stacey Monahan stepped in last year after an auditor’s report found cases of abuse and fraud within the welfare system. She told 22News that it is great to reward those who are taking positive steps toward economic stability.

“To celebrate these accomplishments along the way is really important. And I think you can see from the clients that are here today, sometimes none of these people have ever been recognized for something positive before and so it’s a big deal, it’s really important,” said Commissioner Monahan.

Out of the 254 welfare recipients that were recognized, only 44 made it to the event because the others either had school or had to work, which seems like a good excuse in this case.

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