New Report Details 40% of US Children Living in Low-earning Families

More news about how the economy is affecting children and families: the Foundation for Child Development‘s new report, Living on the Edge: America’s Low-Earning Families [pdf], finds that 40% of all children-30 million kids-grow up in households in which their parents are employed, yet the family still struggles to make ends meet.

The report includes some troubling trends:

  • Rising inequality: Since the 1970s, the incomes of the poorest fifth of American households have risen by 16%. The richest fifth have seen their incomes soar by 95%, and income of the richest 1% has increased by 281%.
  • Stagnating wages in the middle: While productivity grew by 19.8% between 2000 and 2007, the median hourly wage for men went up by just over 1% . Median income actually fell over the 2000-07 business cycle.
  • Increases in low-quality, precarious work: The 60 million new jobs added to the economy over the last generation are very different to yesteryear’s blue-collar jobs. Nearly a third of all American jobs today pay below the median wage and do not offer health or retirement plans.

UPDATE: In other poverty-related news, the New York Times reports on a Pew Hispanic Center study [pdf] that shows Hispanic children living in poverty in the United States outnumber poor white children for the first time.

For more information:

  • Follow the Foundation for Child Development on Twitter @FCDusorg

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