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be careful what you cut
Cutting children from the budget now will cost all of us later.
More than 14.7 million children in America are poor, but they live in working families. A disproportionate number are Black and Latino. Poor children lag behind their peers in many ways beyond income: They are less healthy, trail in emotional and intellectual development, and are less likely to graduate from high school. Poor children also are likely to become the poor parents of the future. Every year that we keep children in poverty costs our nation half a trillion dollars in lost productivity, poorer health and increased crime.
Our vision is to end child poverty. We must invest in high quality education for every child, livable wages for families, income safety nets like job training and job creation, the Earned Income and Child Tax Credits, and work supports like child care and health coverage. We also work with partners to educate families about benefits for which they are eligible.
The latest official data on child poverty released September 16, 2014 shows that while child poverty dropped from 2012 to 2013 for the first time since 2000, nearly one in five children remain poor. While child poverty decreased for Hispanic, White and Asian children, Black children saw no decrease and continue to have the highest child poverty rate. Despite some decreases child poverty among all children remains at shamefully high levels. Nearly one in five children – 14.7 million – were poor in 2013, and children remain the poorest age group in the country. Although 1.5 million fewer children were poor in 2013, there were still 1.3 million more poor children than in 2007 before the recession began. Read more here.
CDF’s report, The State of America’s Children® 2014, shows that in 24 States 40 percent or more of Black children are poor, in 39 States 30 percent or more of Hispanic children are poor and in 24 States 25 percent or more children under six are poor, according to the latest data (from 2012). Learn more.
Child poverty remains at record high levels with children remaining the poorest age group in 2012 and more than one out of five children are poor. Marian Wright Edelman with Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Julia Cass chronicles the new faces of poverty through the “Children of Hard Times”. Traveling across the heartland of America, Ms. Cass reports the desperate toll poverty takes on children and their parents. The stories offer fresh insight into the daily struggle to provide food and shelter, health care and educational support, and find stable employment paying a liveable wage in the United States in 2011. Read their stories and CDF’s response to the sharp increase in child poverty.
Children of Hard Times: New Faces of Child Poverty
On Wednesday, April 30, 2014, Marian Wright Edelman, president of the Children’s Defense Fund, testified before the House Budget Committee on the impact of the War on Poverty on children and how our nation can finish the job started by President Johnson and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. 50 years ago. View and read her oral statement, read her full written testimony, and watch the entire hearing here.
These briefs by Northeastern University economics professor Andy Sum highlight the toll unemployment and poverty have taken on young people and young families with children in the past decade, and the long-term effects this economic crisis will have on America’s future workforce and its economic prosperity. Young families with children have been hit the hardest in what has been called “The Lost Decade” with close to two out of three families living in poverty. Deteriorating earnings for young adults since 1979 have affected their ability to form independent households, reduced marriage rates and increased the share of college graduates living at home. Nearly two million jobs have disappeared from the economy and rampant unemployment, hidden unemployment and mal-employment have affected the earnings of all young workers. This emerging national crisis has long-term social and economic consequences for the nation. Click here to read these briefs.
Researchers at the University of New Hampshire’s Carsey Institute have released a report which details the demographic breakdowns of child poverty in America. The report finds that young children of color in rural areas or single parent families are the most vulnerable to the effects of poverty. Read the full report here.