Making Sense of the 2010 Census Poverty Data: Analysis & Reactions
In September, the U.S. Census Bureau released the official 2010 poverty data, analyzing the level of poverty among American families. A somber look at the state of today's economy, the data showed growing economic inequality and a record increase in poverty, especially among children.
The data also breaks down poverty by age, race, and region. 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. A true telling of the crisis America faces, this data is likely to become reference, ammunition, and evidence for human services advocates as well as for legislation and the upcoming 2012 election.
Since the release, news sources, political and religious organizations, special interest groups, and others have poured out their reactions and own analysis of the data, explaining what it means for their causes, for America, and for our future. To help you make sense of these robust numbers, SparkAction is collecting some of those reactions that we've found particularly helpful in understanding the U.S. Census Data. Continue to check back here as reactions roll in.
September 14, 2011
New Census Data Show More Young People Getting Health Insurance | Young Invincibles
"... More people have access to insurance because of reform, keeping young people healthier and giving them some piece of mind amidst the other hurdles they face in this tough economy."
"Millions of all races are now struggling because they don't make adequate income to support themselves or their families. Increasing poverty indicates opportunities are fewer and farther between or simply do not exist. We need a more fair and just society that allows all people to thrive. But that will only happen if we organize, become a voice in the policy making process, and demand change."
20 Percent of Children Living in Poverty Unacceptable in America | Children's Leadership Council
"The rising child poverty rate is an indictment of America. To have 22 percent of children living in poverty is unacceptable. We are marching in the wrong direction, and we cannot continue to cut essential services for children and families and remain a strong nation."
September 13, 2011
Nearly One in Six In Poverty in the U.S., Children Hit Hard, Census Says | The Washington Post
"Ominously, several analysts said, unemployment is projected to remain unusually high for the foreseeable future, meaning that the nation is probably in for an extended period of rising poverty and declining income."
Statement on Census’ 2010 Poverty, Income, and Health Insurance Data | Center on Budget Policy and Priorities
"All of [this data] raises the stakes for the decisions that President Obama and Congress will make in coming months about whether to extend initiatives that were designed to address hardship during the recession, as well as whether to abide by a principle ... that deficit-reduction plans should not increase poverty and thus should shield basic low-income assistance programs." Also check out their analysis of the data in historical context, with charts.
Analysis of New 2010 Census Poverty Data | National Women's Law Center
"Record numbers of women were living in poverty — and extreme poverty — according to an analysis of 2010 Census data by the National Women's Law Center (NWLC)."
Census Data Underscore the Urgency of Enacting Job-Creating Measures | Center for American Progress
Over the coming weeks, Congress must send a message that we will not stand by and tolerate a shrinking middle class as more families fall into poverty and lose their health care. We can and we must do better.
CHN Declares the Recession is Not Over for a Record-Breaking 46.2 Million Poor Americans | Coalition on Human Needs
"The growing number of poor Americans shows how urgent it is for Congress to act quickly ... Continuing high levels of joblessness and reduced wages hit low- and moderate-income people especially hard in 2010, with unemployment highest for those with little education, for people of color, and for women heads of households ... Poverty remains disproportionate and high for children." Also check out their chart of poverty stats.
Poverty Reduction: The Invisible Hand of Government | The Huffington Post
"The big numbers muscle out an important back story: without government programs, poverty levels would be even worse."
"The Census Bureau data on health insurance status reflect three trends that have reached historic and harmful levels: the number of American workers with job-based health coverage has declined to a historic low, and our nation now has the highest number and percentage of uninsured ever recorded."