|Sunday, September 20, 2020
You are here: Home » World » 46 Million Americans Live Below Poverty Line

46 Million Americans Live Below Poverty Line 


The poverty rate for children rose from 20.7 percent in 2009 to 22 percent last year.

by David Morgan
Reuters
September 13, 2011

The number of Americans living below the poverty line rose to a record 46 million last year, the government said on Tuesday, underscoring the challenges facing President Barack Obama and Congress as they try to tackle high unemployment and a moribund economy.

The Census Bureau’s annual report on income, poverty and health insurance coverage said the national poverty rate climbed for a third consecutive year to 15.1 percent in 2010 as the economy struggled to recover from the recession that began in December 2007 and ended in June 2009.

That marked a 0.8 percent increase from 2009, when there were 43.6 million Americans living in poverty.

The number of poor Americans in 2010 was the largest in the 52 years that the Census Bureau has been publishing poverty estimates, the report said, while the poverty rate was the highest since 1993.

The specter of economic deterioration also afflicted working Americans who saw their median income decline 2.3 percent to an annual $49,445.

About 1.5 million fewer Americans were covered by employer-sponsored health insurance plans, while the number of people covered by government health insurance increased by nearly 2 million.

All told, the number of Americans with no health insurance hovered at 49.9 million, up slightly from 49 million in 2010.

The economic deterioration depicted by the figures is likely to have continued into 2011 as economic growth diminished, unemployment remained stuck above 9 percent and fears grew of a possible double-dip recession.

The report of rising poverty coincides with Obama’s push for a $450 billion job creation package, and deliberations by a congressional “super committee” tasked with cutting at least $1.2 trillion from the budget deficit over 10 years.

Faced with deteriorating job approval ratings, the president is trying to convince Republicans in Congress to support his package.

Analysts said poverty-related issues have relatively little hold on politicians in Washington but hoped the new figures would encourage the bipartisan super committee to avoid deficit cuts that would hurt the poor.

The United States has long had one of the highest poverty rates in the developed world. Among 34 countries tracked by the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, only Chile, Israel and Mexico have higher rates of poverty.

Many people like you read and support The Real Agenda News’ independent, journalism than ever before. Different from other news organisations, we keep our journalism accessible to all.

The Real Agenda News is independent. Our journalism is free from commercial, religious or political bias. No one edits our editor. No one steers our opinion. Editorial independence is what makes our journalism different at a time when factual, honest reporting is lacking elsewhere.

In exchange for this, we simply ask that you read, like and share all articles. This support enables us to keep working as we do.

About the author: Luis Miranda

Luis R. Miranda is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief at The Real Agenda. His career spans over 19 years and almost every form of news media. He attended Montclair State University's School of Broadcasting and also obtained a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism from Universidad Latina de Costa Rica. Luis speaks English, Spanish Portuguese and Italian.

Add a Comment