Tacoma looks to put $500 a month in the pockets of families in need

The City of Tacoma announced a plan to put thousands of dollars into the pockets of families in need through a new pilot program called GRIT.

Officials say before the pandemic, about 40 percent of families in Tacoma struggled just to get by. Now, that number is even higher.

"There is no better time to do a project, to do a demonstration like this, than now. We’ve had lots of conversations about how the needs of our community have been exacerbated by COVID," Tacoma Mayor Victora Woodards said. 

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That's why the city is taking action with its new pilot program called GRIT, which stands for Growing Resilience In Tacoma, playing off the city’s nickname, "Grit City."

The goal is to help out Tacoma families who are working but still struggling, with a focus on assisting people of color who are a single household.

People who meet these criteria can apply and 100 families will be selected at random. These families will receive $500 per month for a full year. The money comes with no stipulations.

RELATED: City of Tacoma highlights areas of equity disparity throughout its community

"Most families don’t have $400 in the bank for an emergency. So a small emergency of $400 could cripple a family. The idea of the $500 is meant for support," said Woodards.  

The dollars for this pilot program are all donated and come at no cost to taxpayers. Organizers said the application process will be announced in a few weeks and the first checks are expected by the end of summer. 

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