September 19, 2014
THE U.S. CENSUS released figures this week that show that the national poverty rate has decreased for the first time since 2006. Don't rush to plan a victory parade, though. The percentage of people in poverty has dropped slightly, but the implications are more mathematical than practical: Median household income has remained the same, and the number of those in poverty in 2013 - 45.3 million - is about the same as the year before. And worse news: The percentage of people living below the poverty level in the Philadelphia metro area rose slightly from 2010 to 2013, from 12.7 percent to 13.5 percent; poverty rates in the city fell slightly.
September 19, 2014 |
New Jersey registered the highest increase in the number of poor people in America between 2012 and 2013, while poverty dropped slightly in Philadelphia. In South Jersey, which includes Burlington, Camden, and Gloucester Counties, an additional 12,145 people became impoverished, a spike of 10 percent that year. In Philadelphia, while 9,000 residents moved out of poverty - a dip from 26.9 percent to 26.3 percent - the city was still the poorest of America's 10 largest cities. The findings were compiled in the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey One-Year Estimates, a huge and diverse set of data based on a survey of people living at 3.5 million addresses throughout the nation.
September 18, 2014 |
The U.S. poverty rate has decreased for the first time since 2006, according to U.S. Census figures released Tuesday. Children's poverty also declined, while median household income barely changed between 2012 and 2013. The report further shows that 42 million people, 13.4 percent of Americans, were without health-insurance coverage in 2013. The data were compiled in the 2014 Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement, which describes conditions in 2013.
September 4, 2014 |
Hoping to stabilize the dilapidated West Philadelphia neighborhood of Mantua, the city wants to entice police officers and firefighters to move into the struggling area - with cash to help buy homes and pay taxes on them. Officials think having police and firefighters living in Mantua and interacting as neighbors with residents would improve the quality of life in the area. But even with the cash incentives, the initial $200,000 program could be a hard sell. "It's a good idea," said Joe Schulle, president of the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 22. "However, our guys are still going to be reluctant to move into transient neighborhoods if they have kids and families.
February 7, 2014 |
IN A CITY already struggling with a high poverty rate, some Asian ethnic groups are faring worse than the average. About 41 percent of Cambodians in Philadelphia are in poverty, as are about 33 percent of Chinese (not including those from Taiwan), and about 31 percent of Vietnamese. In contrast, the poverty rate for Philadelphia as a whole was 25 percent in the Census Bureau's 2006-10 American Community Survey estimates, used for the poverty figures. The findings were highlighted in a new report, A Community of Contrasts: Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders in the Northeast , released yesterday by a consortium of Asian-American organizations.
January 29, 2014
FIFTY years ago, Lyndon Johnson used his first State of the Union address to declare a war on poverty. At that time, 19 percent of Americans lived below the poverty line. Thanks to the programs created during Johnson's war - including Medicaid, Medicare, food stamps and Head Start, among others - poverty was cut by one quarter over three years. Today, at 16 percent, the poverty rate is just three percentage points below 1964's high-water mark; the United States now has 11 million more people living in poverty than it did 50 years ago. Tonight, during his State of the Union address, President Obama is expected to deliver what many might consider a system upgrade - version 2.0 of the war on poverty.
January 23, 2014 |
A week before President Obama is to deliver his State of the Union address, Sen. Robert P. Casey of Pennsylvania is joining a growing chorus of Democratic legislators calling on Congress to raise the federal minimum wage. In a wide-ranging conference call with reporters Tuesday that focused on income inequality, Casey reiterated his support for the Fair Minimum Wage Act, a bill introduced last year that he cosponsored. Supported by Obama and other Democrats, the bill would raise the national minimum wage to $10.10 an hour from its current $7.25.
December 19, 2013 |
Poverty has increased a startling 62 percent in the communities of Lower Northeast Philadelphia since 1999. At the same time, poverty increased 42 percent in Roxborough and Manayunk, while declining 13 percent in South Philadelphia. Those findings come from an Inquirer comparison of 2000 census figures with new data released Tuesday by the Census Bureau. The new federal data were contained in the American Community Survey (ACS), a compilation of information collected from 24.5 million people nationwide between 2008 to 2012.
November 27, 2013 |
The number of children living in poverty in Delaware County increased by 30 percent between 2008 and 2012, according to a new report. Around 21,000 children 17 and under were living in poverty in the county in 2012, according to the report by Public Citizens for Children and Youth (PCCY), a youth advocacy and research nonprofit in Philadelphia. That's a county child-poverty rate of 16.7 percent, PCCY reported. According to the agency's calculations, the Delaware County child-poverty rate is the highest among the four Pennsylvania suburban counties, PCCY officials said at a news conference in the food pantry at the Bernardine Center in Chester on Monday.
November 5, 2013 |
TO PLUG budget deficits, cities raise taxes or cut services, or both. To fix potholes, they send out workers to patch the street. To prevent fires, they distribute smoke detectors and encourage safe building practices. But what can local government do about a problem like poverty? "Poverty is affected by so many international and national factors," said Eva Gladstein, executive director of the city's anti-poverty agency, the Mayor's Office of Community Empowerment and Opportunity.