Children And Poverty In The United States

1851 words - 8 pages

RUNNING HEAD: Children & Poverty in the United States

Children & Poverty in the United States
Kylon D. Shipp
SOC120
University of Phoenix

In the United States, there are millions of families with children who live at or below the poverty guidelines set by the federal government. The federal poverty income level is around $22,050 a year for a family of four, and it takes about twice that amount to cover the basic needs and expenses of a family of this size (National Center for Children in Poverty, August, 2010). Although most parents are employed, the low pay wages these days tend to leave these families in a constant struggle to provide for their children. Most states have ...view middle of the document...

There are still too many children who go hungry and who are malnourished (Wood, 1982). Poverty is a difficult situation to get a handle on because of the constant rise in population in the United States. At this time it was reported by Fordham University that the social well-being of the country had reached its lowest point ever. Young people and children suffer the most from this. Poverty has a tragic affect on all age groups however, 48 percent of its victims are children. Every day there are 2,660 children born into poverty, and of these impoverished children, 27 of them die because of it (Hearts and Minds, 2007).
According to a study done by the Coalition of Human Needs (2007), the number of people who lacked enough money to afford proper nutrition rose from 36 million to 49 million in one year alone. Children made up 17 million of those people. There are too many poor children who often go hungry and these same children do not have regular access to medical care. Children living in poverty are kept isolated due to lack of transportation, and suffer from having no quality child care and no early education. When they are old enough to begin attending school, they are forced to attend schools with low-funding, are extremely crowded, and they receive very little attention. Poor children are also exposed to violence more often and have the tendency to drop out of school more often. Experts today are worried that children that are born into poverty have much less of a chance than they did in the earlier years (ucc.org, 2010).
New York City
Domestic poverty is all over the United States, but it is especially widespread in New York City. Children in New York City score lower among all others in state and national levels for low birth weight, infant mortality, violent deaths, neglect, abuse, education, and employment readiness. Life is just not getting any better for the children in New York City. Children make up 25 percent of the population in New York and there are at least 10,000 homeless children in New York City alone. There are an estimated 762,000 children who are living in poverty in New York City. New York City children also have lower reading and math scores than other children across the United States in their same grade level (Hearts and Minds, 2007).
How Poverty is Measured
Each year there are poverty thresholds issued by the United States census Bureau. These thresholds are how the United States determines what the official poverty rates are. These thresholds reflect how much annual income is needed to meet the requirements or basic needs of families that are a particular size. A family is considered to be poor if the money that they earn before taxes is below the poverty threshold. These poverty thresholds are then given to the Department of Health and Human Services so that they are able to determine whether people are eligible for federally funded programs such as cash aid, food stamps, medical, etc. Even though the...

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