We’re proud to collaborate with The Nation in sharing insightful journalism related to income inequality in America. The following is an excerpt from Nation contributor Greg Kaufmann’s “This Week in Poverty” column.
U.S. poverty (less than $17,916 for a family of three): 46.2 million people, 15.1 percent
Children in poverty: 16.1 million, 22 percent of all children, including 39 percent of African-American children and 34 percent of Latino children. Poorest age group in country.
Deep poverty (less than $11,510 for a family of four): 20.4 million people, 1 in 15 Americans, including more than 15 million women and children
People who would have been in poverty if not for Social Security, 2011: 67.6 million
(program kept 21.4 million people out of poverty)
People in the U.S. experiencing poverty by age 65: Roughly half
Gender gap, 2011: Women 34 percent more likely to be poor than men
Gender gap, 2010: Women 29 percent more likely to be poor than men
Twice the poverty level (less than $46,042 for a family of four): 106 million people, more than 1 in 3 Americans
Jobs in the U.S. paying less than $34,000 a year: 50 percent
Jobs in the U.S. paying below the poverty line for a family of four, less than $23,000 annually: 25 percent
Poverty-level wages, 2011: 28 percent of workers
Percentage of individuals and family members in poverty who either worked or lived with a working family member, 2011: 57 percent
Families receiving cash assistance, 1996: 68 for every 100 families living in poverty
Families receiving cash assistance, 2010: 27 for every 100 families living in poverty
Impact of public policy, 2010: Without government assistance, poverty would have been twice as high — nearly 30 percent of population
Percentage of entitlement benefits going to elderly, disabled or working households: Over 90 percent.
Number of homeless children in U.S. public schools: 1,065,794
Annual cost of child poverty nationwide: $550 billion
Federal expenditures on home ownership mortgage deductions, 2012: $131 billion
Federal funding for low-income housing assistance programs, 2012: Less than $50 billion
|Greg Kaufmann is a Nation contributor covering poverty in America. His work has also appeared on Common Dreams, Alternet, Tikkun.org, NPR.org, CBSNews.com and MichaelMoore.com. He serves as an adviser for the Economic Hardship Reporting Project.|