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Category Archives: Poverty

Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2017

“The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that real median household income increased by 1.8 percent between 2016 and 2017, while the official poverty rate decreased 0.4 percentage points. At the same time, the number of people without health insurance coverage and the uninsured rate were not statistically different from 2016. Median household income in the United States in 2017 was $61,372, an increase in real terms of 1.8 percent from the 2016 median income of $60,309. This is the third consecutive annual increase in median household income. The nation’s official poverty rate in 2017 was 12.3 percent, with 39.7 million people in poverty. The number of people in poverty in 2017 was not statistically different from the number in poverty in 2016. The 0.4 percentage-point decrease in the poverty rate from 2016 (12.7 percent) to 2017 represents the third consecutive annual decline in poverty. Since 2014, the poverty rate has fallen 2.5 percentage points, from 14.8 percent to 12.3 percent. The percentage of people without health insurance coverage for the entire 2017 calendar year was 8.8 percent, or 28.5 million, not statistically different from 2016 (8.8 percent or 28.1 million people). Between 2016 and 2017, the number of people with health insurance coverage increased by 2.3 million, up to 294.6 million.

These findings are contained in two reports: Income and Poverty in the United States: 2017 and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2017.

Another Census Bureau report, The Supplemental Poverty Measure: 2017, was also released today. The supplemental poverty rate in 2017 was 13.9 percent, not statistically different from the 2016 supplemental poverty rate of 14.0 percent. The Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM) provides an alternative way of measuring poverty in the United States and serves as an additional indicator of economic well-being. The Census Bureau has published poverty estimates using the SPM annually since 2011 with the collaboration of the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The Current Population Survey, sponsored jointly by the Census Bureau and Bureau of Labor Statistics, is conducted every month and is the primary source of labor force statistics for the U.S. population; it is used to calculate the monthly unemployment rate estimates. Supplements are added in most months; the Annual Social and Economic Supplement is designed to give annual, national estimates of income, poverty and health insurance numbers and rates. The most recent Annual Social and Economic Supplement was conducted nationwide (February, March and April 2018) and collected information about income and health insurance coverage during the 2017 calendar year.”

The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2018

11 September 2018, Rome – “New evidence continues to signal that the number of hungry people in the world is growing, reaching 821 million in 2017 or one in every nine people, according to The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2018 released today. Limited progress is also being made in addressing the multiple… Continue Reading

SNAP benefits add up to $1.86 per person, per meal. Here’s what that looks like.

“CityLab Editor’s note: Earlier this month, the White House surprised many observers by declaring a successful end to the War on Poverty. Now, the future of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is in the hands of Congress as it negotiates a farm bill. So CityLab visual storyteller Ariel Aberg-Riger is taking a closer look… Continue Reading

Toward the control of cancer – issues opportunities screening and treatment

“Cancer is a devastating disease. It is estimated that 1.7 million Americans will be diagnosed with cancer in 2018 and approximately 610,000 will die of it. Cancer does not discriminate. It affects humans of all ages, races, and ethnicities. Although virtually everyone is at risk for developing and dying from cancer, the burden of this… Continue Reading

HHS Report – Economic Opportunity and the Opioid Crisis: Geographic and Economic Trends

“This study examines relationships between indicators of economic opportunity and the prevalence of prescription opioids and substance use in the United States. We have three primary findings: The prevalence of drug overdose deaths and opioid prescriptions has risen unevenly across the county, with rural areas more heavily impacted. Specific geographic areas, such as Appalachia, parts… Continue Reading

UN representative reports on extreme poverty and human rights on his mission to US

Via Common Dreams: “The United Nations has released a scathing report on poverty and inequality in the United States. The findings, which will be presented to the U.N. Human Rights Council on June 21, follow an official visit to the United States by Philip Alston, the U.N. special rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights,… Continue Reading

Mayors & CEOs for U.S. Housing Investment

Curbed: “Why isn’t homelessness seen as a national crisis? Cities call on the federal government to confront the growing numbers of homeless residents…The group, called Mayors & CEOs for U.S. Housing Investment, intends to work with HUD to make sure cities don’t lose federal dollars, and come up with new and innovative ways to fund… Continue Reading

World Bank Report Finds Rise in Global Wealth, but Inequality Persists

“Global wealth grew significantly over the past two decades but per capita wealth declined or stagnated in more than two dozen countries in various income brackets, says a new World Bank report. Going beyond traditional measures such as GDP, the report uses wealth to monitor countries’ economic progress and sustainability. The Changing Wealth of Nations… Continue Reading

Oxfam – The State of Inequality in the World

“Our new report about the state of inequality in the world reveals how our economy is delivering unimaginable rewards for those at the top by exploiting millions of ordinary workers at the bottom…Last year saw the biggest increase in billionaires in history, one more every two days. This huge increase could have ended global extreme… Continue Reading

U.S. Welfare Reform Efforts Have Been Based on an Availability of Work that Doesn’t Always Exist

“Hilary W. Hoynes, an NBER research associate and professor of economics and public policy at the University of California, Berkeley, specializes in the study of poverty, food and nutrition programs, and the impacts of government tax and transfer programs on low income families. In this video, she outlines successes and failures of federal efforts to… Continue Reading

World Inequality Report 2018

“The World Inequality Report 2018 relies on a cutting-edge methodology to measure income and wealth inequality in a systematic and transparent manner. By developing this report, the World Inequality Lab seeks to fill a democratic gap and to equip various actors of society with the necessary facts to engage in informed public debates on inequality. … Continue Reading

Visualizing Unequal Distribution of Gun Violence in the US

The Guardian: “The map of America’s gun violence epidemic can seem overwhelming. There were more than 13,000 gun homicides in the US in 2015, across nearly 3,500 cities and towns. But the toll of this gun violence was not distributed equally. Half of America’s gun homicides in 2015 were clustered in just 127 cities and… Continue Reading