The overall percentage of families below the poverty threshold.
Real Median Income Gained as Poverty Held Steady in 2007
Published Friday, July 24th, 2009
The new report on the US official poverty rate released by the US Census Bureau called “Income, poverty and health insurance coverage in the United States: 2007” has stated that real median household income in the United States climbed 1.3% between 2006 and 2007, reaching $50,233. The US official poverty rate in 2007 was 12.5% (37.3 million), which is steady from 2006 (36.5 million). This and other influences has lead the number of people without health insurance coverage to decline from 47 million (15.8%) in 2006 to 45.7 million (15.3%) in 2007.
Broken down, minorities also gained in real median income adjusted for inflation, which rose between 2006 and 2007 for black ($33,916 in 2007) and non-Hispanic white households ($54,920 in 2007), the first such increase since 1999. However, for Asians ($66,103 in 2007) and Hispanics ($38,679 in 2007) real income did not change. The family poverty rate and the number of families in poverty were 9.8% and 7.6 million, unchanged from 2006. As for Female-householders/No-Husband-Present the rate was 28.3% (a decrease of 2.8 percentage points) and 13.6% for those with male householder and no-wife-present. The US Office of management and budget has updated the weighted average poverty threshold for a family of four in 2007 as $21,203, for a family of 3 at $16,530, 2 at $13,540, and 1 at $10,590.
Welfare Rolls Shrink from Some Hard Hit Areas
Published Friday, July 3rd, 2009
According to Health and Human Services, the welfare rolls have been rising in most states over the last year. In the some of the hardest-hit areas, one would think the rolls would raise the most; yet, the numbers are decreasing. Utah is leading the trend as rolls have increased by 29% more cases than last year. Yet, Michigan, a state facing the highest unemployment, has experienced 4.8% reductions in welfare rolls. Authorities suggest that some may be leaving the state for better prospects or the ones who are staying are receiving unemployment benefits. The usual assistance provided by unemployment puts many beyond the eligibility of welfare. Some advocates believe the strict provision of the 1996 revamp of Welfare System has slowed down applicant’s entry into welfare. Nationally, Texas, Georgia, Indiana, Alaska, Montana, New Jersey, and Nebraska all have falling rolls.
As of 2006, the most current data from the Current Population Reports, the Federal Poverty Threshold or poverty line for families of 4 rest at $20,614, an increase of nearly $5,000 from a decade ago. The most vulnerable, children, as of 1996 had experienced near 23% poverty rate; this had dropped to 15% by 2000 and increased after to 17% by 2006. Likewise, families experienced the same rate of decline and leveling to 10.8%; those with only female heads-of-households reached 30.7%.
Food Stamp Use Nears Record
Published Wednesday, November 26th, 2008
In 2005, just after Hurricane Katrina food stamp usage hit an all time high, used by 30 million Americans. With unemployment hitting 6.5% in October of this year and food prices 6.1% higher than last year, the use of food stamps and food pantries are rising to those historic records. Government data states that 11.9 million Americans went hungry at some point last year, this includes 700,000 children, which is 50% higher than the previous year .
To be eligible for these programs a family of four must earn less than or equal to 130% below the federal poverty level or $27,564. Benefits average $109.93 a month per person and the max is set at $588 a month. In September, inflation in food prices created a $64 shortfall in the benefits meeting the USDA Thrifty Food Plan requirements. The October inflation adjustment of benefits brought it up to meeting that USDA standard, however, the food pantries visits are up 20-100%. There have been two measures in Congress in the last year to bump up the food stamp program 10-20%, yet they have not passed.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Poverty - http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/
The Department of Health and Human Services is the United States government's principal agency for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services, especially for those who are least able to help themselves.
The Department of Health and Human Services: Administration for Children and Families - http://www.acf.hhs.gov/
The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) is a federal agency funding state, territory, local, and tribal organizations to provide family assistance (welfare), child support, child care, Head Start, child welfare, and other programs relating to children and families.