Over the last ten years, an increase in the number of children living below the poverty level has increased by 5.8 percent. In 2012, the U.S. has experienced child poverty rates not seen since 1975.
According to a recent study by the Foundation for Child Development, one in five children in America are currently living with a family whose income is below the U.S. government’s established poverty level of $23,021.
The study notes that the increase of child poverty in the U.S. is influenced by the decline of family incomes, especially since 2007. Households where men are the sole money makers have seen a higher amount of income decline. The depressed job market is also a reason for the increase in child poverty, the study says.
Children of middle class households are also seeing their family’s worth decline.
The study’s author, Kenneth Land wrote:
The significant economic improvements families made in the 1990s have now all but disappeared.
The study cites other sources of diminished child well-being including decreases in religious participation, decreases in preschool enrollment, fairly stagnant healthcare access and an increase in child obesity.
Positive, upward trends provided some hope as rates in violence, crime, smoking, pregnancy and alcohol consumption went down. Furthermore, more college age young people are obtaining college degrees now than ever before.