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Public input sought for poverty forum

CHUM intern Lisa Tranah keeps track of candidate responses at the 2014 Local Solutions to Poverty candidate forum. (Duluth Budgeteer file photo)

Nearly one in five Duluthians lives below the federal poverty line. Fifty-two percent of Duluth renters struggle to afford housing. The Duluth Public Schools expects more than 500 students at one point in the school year will experience homelessness.

The fourth annual 2016 Local Solutions to Poverty Candidate Forum on Oct. 27 will feature candidates in the state Legislature and the St. Louis County Board. The forum will give the candidates a chance to hear directly from low-income Duluthians and will give the community a chance to learn how the candidates stand.

To help develop the agenda for this year's forum, organizers with CHUM and Loaves and Fishes Community are hosting public input sessions to identify the top issues faced by low income people in Duluth. Public input sessions take place Tuesday, Oct. 4; one is 4-5 p.m. at the CHUM Food Shelf, 120 N First Ave. W. and the other 7:30-8:30 p.m. at Morgan Park Community Center, 1242 88th Ave. W.

All low-income Duluthians are welcome and encouraged to participate in one of the sessions. Candidates will not be present at the input sessions, but the information gathered will directly guide the questions asked of the candidates at the forum.

The forum is 6-7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 27 at Holy Family Catholic Church, 2430 W. Third St.

For more information, call Joel Kilgour at (218) 340-4356.