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 Since the 1960s, the United States Government has defined poverty in absolute terms. This makes poverty more easily measurable.  The "absolute poverty.

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Presentation on theme: " Since the 1960s, the United States Government has defined poverty in absolute terms. This makes poverty more easily measurable.  The "absolute poverty."— Presentation transcript:


2  Since the 1960s, the United States Government has defined poverty in absolute terms. This makes poverty more easily measurable.  The "absolute poverty line" is the threshold below which families or individuals are considered to be lacking the resources to meet the basic needs for healthy living; having insufficient income to provide the food, shelter and clothing needed to preserve health.  A large percentage of the governments poverty measurements depend on the price of food.

3  "Relative poverty" can be defined as having significantly less access to income and wealth than other members of society. Therefore, the relative poverty rate can directly be linked to income inequality.  Means relative poverty can decline if rich people lose a lot of money.

4  The current poverty measure was established in the 1960s and is now widely acknowledged to be outdated. It was based on research indicating that families spent about one-third of their incomes on food — the official poverty level was set by multiplying food costs by three. Since then, the same figures have been updated annually for inflation but have otherwise remained unchanged.  Yet food now comprises only one-seventh of an average family’s expenses, while the costs of housing, child care, health care, and transportation have grown disproportionately. Most analysts agree that today’s poverty thresholds are too low. And although there is no consensus about what constitutes a minimum but decent standard of living in the U.S., research consistently shows that, on average, families need an income of about twice the federal poverty level to meet their most basic needs.

5  46 million Americans live below the official poverty line.  One in 5 American children now lives in poverty.  A family of four is considered poor if the family’s income is below $22,350.  One third of all Americans will experience poverty within a 13-year period. In that period, one in 10 Americans are poor for most of the time, and one in 15 are poor for 10 or more years.

6  Fifteen percent-- approximately 46 million people -- now live below the federal poverty line of $22,350 for a family of four. (A woefully inadequate measure that is terribly old and fails to account for basic necessities.) That's millions more people than in 2000 and the poverty rate for children is the highest of all age groups. Nearly 90 million people live just above the poverty line. (Using the British standard of measurement, approximately 30 percent of Americans --and 40 percent of American children -- are living in poverty).

7  Eighteen percent of children are in poverty.  10.9 percent of working-age adults (between the ages of 16 and 64) are in poverty.  9.7 percent of the elderly are in poverty.  13.8 percent of females and 11.1 percent of males were poor

8  Federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour  Some states and localities have mandated a higher minimum wage  Minimum wage in New York state is also $7.25  Minimum wage in Kansas in 2009 was $2.65 before the Federal Minimum wage was instituted

9  Inequality has reached record highs. The richest 1 percent of Americans in 2012 held the largest share of the nation’s income since 1929. At the same time, the poorest 20 percent of Americans held only 3.4 percent of the nation’s income.

10  Urban areas have a poverty rate of 17%, compared to a poverty rate of 9% for the suburbs.  White flight  No new businesses = no jobs  Higher crime rates  Higher rates of pollution

11  Poverty rate in the South is 20%.  One in 5 people living in rural America lives below the poverty line.  Poverty rates are higher in rural areas for almost every demographic.

12  Nearly a third of Native Americans live in poverty.  The country's 2.1 million Indians, about 400,000 of whom live on reservations, have the highest rates of poverty, unemployment and disease of any ethnic group in America.  Indians earn only a little more than half as much money as the average American.

13  Lower education— Low levels of parental education are a primary risk factor for being low income. Eighty-three percent of children whose parents have less than a high school diploma live in low-income families, and over half of children whose parents have only a high school degree are low income as well.  New to the country  Don’t possess marketable skills  Has a disability  Single parent households

14  Poverty—is it the fault of the individual or society?  People who blame society tend to argue that forces like capitalism and racism are to blame for domestic poverty.  People who blame the individual tend to focus on factors like individual will and personal choices for why domestic poverty exists.

15  Social services—are they a right that cannot be taken away or are they a privilege that can be taken away?  Are social services like health care and subsidized housing and food a human right?  Governments can provide negative rights and positive rights. Negative right = something the government won’t interfere with or take away (life, liberty, pursuit of cash).  Positive right = something the government provides or gives you.

16  Poverty—is it even possible to eliminate it?  Even if it is possible, are the cures worst than the disease?  Is there an acceptable level of poverty that we can be content with?

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