Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2010

Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2010
U.S. Census Bureau
September 13, 2011
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The U.S. Census Bureau released the official 2010 poverty census data, which reveals that 1 in 16 Americans are living in poverty today. The data also shows that without the help of federal programs such as SNAP, social security, and medicare, that these numbers would have been even higher.This annual data is truly telling of the state of the American economy, and the health and wellbeing of children and families.  Click the link below to find the release, summary, and full report. 

The Bureau has also released some overall data about the poverty in specific states-- more in-depth analyses are set to be released the week of September 19.

Don't get lost in the numbers! Census data can be overwhelming and difficult to make sense of.  To help us wrap our head around what this year's data says. SparkAction has collected the comprehensive analyses reactions from advocacy and other organizations that we have found helpful in understanding what the poverty data says and means for child, youth, and family advocacy.  Read these comprehensive pieces here, and continue to check back as we update with more links on a daily basis.

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OK. Let’s talk about the deficit – the federal deficit, of course – but also the jobs deficit. Conservatives are fighting to preserve expensive tax breaks for the wealthiest households, arguing that these are the people who create jobs. It’s a nice theory, but it doesn’t hold up if you look at the history of these tax breaks.

In the decade after these high-end tax breaks were enacted, we did not experience robust job growth. In fact, job growth after 2001 and before the financial meltdown of 2008 was unusually weak. When the financial meltdown triggered the Great Recession, we quickly built up a job deficit of 8 million jobs.

Since then, what has helped to protect and strengthen job growth?

The CBO says government funding for jobs in the recovery act tackled the job deficit directly – the ARRA was responsible for protecting or creating 2.9 million jobs. That’s a significant contribution to reducing our job deficit.

How many jobs have the so-called “job creators” provided? During this time CEO’s have put few people back to work, choosing, in general, to hold onto their cash than to restore their workforce. The latest census figures show a sharp rise in poverty and a tighter squeeze on middle class families, as median income has stagnated despite dramatically increasing health care and college costs.

So let’s get beyond deceptive rhetoric and put our taxpayer money where it will, in fact, do the most good, not where it makes the best sound bite! Let’s put our money directly to work to create jobs – research in new, not add more padding for CEO investment portfolios.

September 14 at 10:30am


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