Stranded by the State: The 8-Part Web Series

Stranded by the State: The 8-Part Web Series

Illinois did not pass a real budget for over a year, the first state to do so since the Great Depression. The fight over the budget between Governor Bruce Rauner and the Illinois General Assembly has been covered widely, but what do the effects of this lingering crisis look like in people’s day-to-day lives? This new video series—a collaboration between In These Times and Kartemquin Films—follows the families, workers and students living through the de facto budget cuts, showing the ways it deteriorates the fabric of Illinois communities.

Each episode focuses on a different aspect of the crisis—from higher education to social services to housing—as well as who is benefiting from the crisis and what kinds of solutions could ultimately solve it. The series incorporates data connecting the situation in Illinois to long-term trends of austerity affecting the country at large, and how it ultimately costs taxpayers more in the long run.

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Stranded by the State: The 8-Part Web Series

8 Videos

  • Stranded by the State - Episode 1 / Public Higher Education

    For decades, public higher education has been defunded across the country. And in Illinois, the ongoing budget standoff is "the straw that broke the camel's back". With the state's stopgap budget expiring December 31, 2016, students still don’t know if their current MAP grants will be funded. Thi...

  • Stranded by the State - Episode 2 / At-Risk Youth

    Illinois’ ongoing budget crisis has led to dramatic cuts to social services—often up to 40%. These programs are vital to protecting the state’s most vulnerable residents, including at-risk youth. The state-wide CCBYS program, focusing on preventative counseling for youth and families, was created...

  • Stranded by the State - Episode 3 / Homelessness

    Tens of thousands of homeless Illinois residents rely on social services for housing support. The state’s ongoing budget crisis has led to drastic cuts in funding to these programs—up to 40%—leading to more mental health emergencies, more incarceration, and much higher costs for taxpayers. This e...

  • Stranded by the State - Episode 4 / Meals on Wheels

    Seniors are the fastest growing population in the country, and more than half are "economically insecure.” The Illinois budget crisis has led to deep cuts to programs supporting them—including Meals on Wheels—hurting scores of seniors living in poverty. Set in the former manufacturing town of Alt...

  • Stranded by the State - Episode 5 / Adult Education

    This episode of Stranded by the State explores how the Illinois budget crisis is causing extreme cuts to adult literacy and education programs—and deeply impacting the families who rely on them. Featuring Chicago's vibrant community organization Centro Romero, we see the effects on ESL, economic...

  • Stranded by the State - Episode 6 / Home Visiting for Young Moms

    Filmed around Bloomington, Illinois, this new episode follows an early childhood development program whose funds have been slashed due to the budget impasse. Home visiting is proven effective in promoting child development and preventing neglect or abuse. Across the state, teen moms and their chi...

  • Stranded by the State - Episode 7 / Child Care Assistance

    Across Illinois, the Child Care Assistance Program helps children remain in child care centers while their parents go to work, often at low-wage jobs. When the state budget didn't pass in 2015, Governor Rauner slashed income eligibility for working families, leaving 90% without access to the vita...

  • Stranded by the State - Episode 8 / Toxic Swaps

    The final episode of Stranded by the State looks at the role big banks have played in destabilizing communities across the country. The same banks who were responsible for the foreclosure crisis in 2008 are now making huge sums of money from predatory loans made to state and city governments.
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