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SW200 ~ Spring 2010 University of Alabama Wharton.

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Presentation on theme: "SW200 ~ Spring 2010 University of Alabama Wharton."— Presentation transcript:

1 SW200 ~ Spring 2010 University of Alabama Wharton

2 1/6 of the world population lives in extreme poverty. Governments around the world define poverty differently. One of the “2015 Millennium Goals” is to cut poverty in half world-wide. Related to poverty & the poverty line: Juvenile justice, housing, substance abuse, employment, primary education issues, literacy, childcare programs, drug access (AIDS drug assistance), college access issues (student loans)… MOST SOCIAL WELFARE PROGRAMS DEAL WITH SYMPTOMS OF POVERTY.

3 Absolute or Extreme Lack of basic resources: shelter, food, water Relative A household income below a given proportion of average national income Moderate A household income that falls at or below the poverty line but still provides for most needs; Working poor.

4 Economist Molly Orshansky, Social Security Administration: 1964, using the 1955 Household Food Consumption Survey Based on “market basket approach” Originally: estimated a basic but nutritional food budget for a family of 4; multiplied by 3 (surveys indicated 1/3 of income= food) Annual changes have been based on inflation of the Consumer Price Index. Guidelines are used for means-tested programs: vary by family size; separate measures for Alaska & Hawaii due to EOA legislation

5 She indicated guidelines represented “how much, on an average, is too little,” not “how much is enough.” Only takes into account cash resources, BEFORE taxes Accounts for neither family assets nor lack of resources Does not consider regional differences in cost of living (national guideline) Does not consider other issues, such as special problems or hardships that drain away income (debt, chronic illness, etc)

6 Persons in family Poverty guideline 2010 levels will use the 2009 guideline thru at least May 31. 1 $10,830 (150%= $16,245) 2 14,570 (150%= $21,855) 3 18,310 (150%= $27,465) 4 22,050 (150%= $33,075) (209%= $46,085) 5 25,790 (150%= $38,685) 6 29,530 7 33,270 8 37,010 For families with more than 8 persons, add $3,740 for each additional person. According to HHS: “The national median two-parent two-child budget (in 2004) was equal to 209 % of the corresponding official poverty threshold, while budgets for individual areas ranged from 162 % (rural Nebraska) to 338 % (Boston, Massachusetts) of the official threshold.” ALTERNATIVES ARE NOW BEING CONSIDERED TO THESE GUIDELINES.

7 $8/hr ($7.25 is min wage) x 40 hrs/week= $320 50 weeks/yr= $16,000 Subtract taxes: approx 24%= $3,840 (leaving $12,160) Rent? $500/month= $6000 (leaving $6,160) Gas? $150/month= $1800 (leaving $4,360) Food? $200/month= $2400 (leaving $1,960) Cell phone? Internet? Cable tv? Gifts for family? Health care??

8 Low-wages Unreliable or unavailable work Food & gas price increases Health care costs wiping out savings Family death with no insurance removing provider Unavailability of childcare Lack of savings, esp retirement savings Resource decline in the area or population growth

9 Living wage Savings, esp retirement savings can break trans- generational poverty Technology can increase opportunities Agricultural technology can help increase crop yields and decrease costs Wider access to employment resources Wider access to training opportunities Health care access Affordable housing & transportation Affordable childcare for working families

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