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Cardillo outlines plan to fight poverty in Utica

Posted 3/14/23

Utica Mayoral candidate Robert Cardillo announced a plan to help combat poverty in Utica. 

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Cardillo outlines plan to fight poverty in Utica


UTICA — Utica Mayoral candidate Robert Cardillo announced a plan to help combat poverty in Utica. After working closely with People First and the local AmeriCorps Program in Utica, Cardillo presented a three-pronged plan to address the issue.

“Approximately 30 percent of Utica’s population live in poverty as of 2019 according to With those under 18 years of age, it is 36.4%. African Americans live in poverty at a rate of 43%, Hispanics at 31%, and the list goes on,” Cardillo pointed out. “In a country with trillions of dollars in assets, this is totally unacceptable.”

Cardillo’s plan contained the following:

  • Convene a summit of all social service agencies, not-for-profits, religious entities, and veteran’s agencies that are assisting those in need to determine what, if any, services to consolidate and/or to add to our community to better meet the public’s needs. This will allow the entire community to understand the situation we are facing in totality and point out the deficiencies that need attention.
  • Create an Office of Public Services to consolidate all efforts under one roof to better maximize the use of the resources available to the community. Ideally, a person with a master’s in social work would best lead this office, ideally with an extensive background in social services, with a track record of success in other communities. The leader of this department would have a prominent seat at the table in a Cardillo Administration.
  • Petition the state and federal government for more funding for effective programs like AmeriCorps to get more boots on the ground to tackle the citizens’ needs. More funding is assuredly needed to combat the mental health crisis in our communities, and with Cardillo’s extensive experience on the state and national level securing funding, no one is better equipped to secure that funding.

“Poverty is a major problem,” Cardillo added. “The United Way and the City of Utica have begun to tackle this issue, and the next administration cannot drop the ball on it. When nearly 20,000 of a city’s citizens are living what is termed ‘working poor’ lives, something needs to be done, and done quickly.”

“I will be releasing economic development studies and planning in the coming weeks ahead to reposition Utica to leverage its strategic assets and prepare its workforce with Utica’s trade schools, BOCES and our academic institutions. We will also work with regional economic development authorities, industrial leaders and venture community to attract new business here,” Cardillo concluded.


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