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Child Poverty Jumps In Poor Areas By A Quarter Over Last Decade (Participation)

February 24, 2012


Child Poverty


In the last decade, the number of children living in areas of concentrated poverty grew by 1.6 million, according to a new study released by the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

In 2000, 6.3 million children lived in high poverty areas in the United States, according to the report. By 2010, the number had climbed to 8 million, at a growth rate of about 25 percent.

The increase erases gains made in the 1990s, when the number of children living in high-poverty areas declined.

The study defined areas of concentrated poverty as census tracts where 30 percent of residents or more live below the government’s poverty threshold, defined as an income of $22,000 or less for a family of four.

“We chose to look at this data because we know that regardless of the family’s income, children who grow up in high-poverty communities are more likely to have their long-term outcomes be hampered by the community that they live in,” said Laura Speer, the foundation’s associate director for policy reform and data. “They have difficulty finding a good school, they’re more like to struggle with getting access to good healthcare providers, they’re more likely to be exposed to high levels of stress, and they’re more likely to have social and behavioral problems because of that.”

The study shows that certain children are more likely to live in areas of high poverty than others. They include children in cities or rural areas, as opposed to the suburbs, and children of color. African-American, American Indian and Latino children are six to nine times more likely than white children to live in high poverty areas.

The city with the highest rates of children living in areas of concentrated poverty is Detroit at 67 percent, followed by Cleveland and Miami. Mississippi, New Mexico, Louisiana, Texas and Arizona rank highest among states in this category.

The study also notes that three-quarters of children living in these neighborhoods have at least one employed parent.

As the federal government prepares a new budget for 2013, the report arguably has important implications for those deciding where to direct resources. Patricia Cole, the director of government relations for Zero To Three, an organization that advocates for policies that benefit young children and their families, said that neighborhood poverty is “of great concern” and could affect the country’s future workforce.

via Child Poverty Jumps In Poor Areas By A Quarter Over Last Decade.

via Child Poverty Jumps In Poor Areas By A Quarter Over Last Decade.


From → Participation

  1. Kyla Chappell permalink

    Most importantly, I believe something needs to be initiated to help fix this problem. Because, if not it will become a viscous cycle that never ends. It is sad because children are the ones who need nutrition and support the most, and with so many lacking these needs in creates a slim chance of a bright future for them. Not only that, if this problem continues to go unresolved, it could highly affect the country’s future work source in a negative way.

  2. Laura Zaro permalink

    I agree that it really is a vicious cycle that will only grow bigger with time. As the problem continues to grow larger, a solution becomes more difficult to find because of the increasing amount of people. It is not someone’s fault that they are born into poverty and getting out and being successful is more difficult for them.

  3. Katie Nelson permalink

    I agree and recognize that this is a perpetual process that is hard to stop once its going. I know people would love to see changes in the Budget for 2013, but a lot of people, especially Whites, don’t want to give up the privileges they already have with the current budget. This relates to white privilege and the invisible backpack, an how there is continuous privilege given to the superior race because of this cycle of racism. This is a sad article however, because there is very little we can do to change this pattern in society but something needs to be done to help these people.

  4. How does meritocracy play out here and how does the erasure of a history of various forms of social assistance impact discussions about poverty now?

  5. Laurel Mahnke permalink

    This post reminds me of the idea that in poverty stricken countries the birth rate is higher. Many sociologists have concluded that this pattern is ongoing because of allocation of resources and education. As a white kid growing up in a fairly affluent community, I don’t know I would give up my privilege for those who experience more poverty. Meritocracy has decided that the parents of affluent communities have worked harder than parents of these children living in poverty. Why should those that are hard working pay for those haven’t worked as hard? A common view from the meritocracy may be that we are giving these people a free pass by bailing them out. The only way to fix the problem is to acknowledge the benefits history has afforded one area and denied the other. It is not about who worked harder, but the cycle of privilege.

  6. Kate McNevin permalink

    Meritocracy makes the White people who have gotten privileges believe that they have earned these things. I think the people living in more wealthy areas think that they worked hard to live there and own all their products. With that said, I think the meritocracy in the white population is more elevated than it should be, while the meritocracy in the poverty stricken areas is completely negated and ignored. Poverty in America is a vicious cycle, and just because someone finds themselves in that position, doesn’t mean they haven’t worked hard in the past or aren’t working hard to get out of that situation. The institutions that are in place make it nearly impossible for people in poverty to escape that situation. I don’t think people are always aware of the cycle that poverty has become, which is why those same people have bad attitudes about social assistance programs.

  7. Aaron Verhei permalink

    I think this is a horrible circle these kids get sucked into. It seems like if you are born into these high poverty areas you are going to grow up and stay in them. I think something needs to be done about these areas and try to help the parents make a higher income so they can try to move out. In these areas i believe more gang activities start and children try to join gang because they see easy money there instead of trying to get out of the areas and make a higher income for themselves so they can fight the circle to get out of these areas. I half way think that the cities and local areas should help these children and families by giving them a better opportunity to get a higher education and keep them away from gangs and other things and help them. But also i believe it come on the children to want to get out and work hard to get out of the high poverty areas.

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