In the last few months, Yumekia Jones, a legal assistant at the Mississippi Center for Justice's Indianola office, has fielded an unusually high number of calls — a roughly 400% spike — from people in dire need of immediate financial assistance.
Most want to avoid payday loans, which offer quick cash against future paychecks without a credit check and come with an interest rate above 500%. But the rapidly increasing prices of food, fuel and rent gives them few options.
Inflation rates are at a 40-year high and unemployment is near a half-century low. To most economists those two realities spell out significant economic trouble.