Causes of Poverty

Category: Economics
Date added
Pages:  3
Words:  797

Some causes of poverty in the United States are: unemployment, inflation, poor management of resources, government policies, debt, corruption, extreme weather, lack of control in local food, lack of access to education, mental illness ( lack of proper psychiatric care), diseases, automation, and overpopulation. Poverty is a pervasive human condition of being unable to obtain or provide a standard level of food, water and/or shelter. It exists in every country in varying degrees, and it is unlikely to disappear anytime soon. The United States is considered the richest country in the world, and yet millions of its residents live in poverty.

Poverty is measured in two ways – absolute poverty and relative poverty. Absolute poverty looks at the goods and services someone (or a family) cannot obtain. Relative poverty looks at the context of the need, how one social group compares to others. The official method of calculating America’s poverty levels was developed in the 1960s and has not been refined substantially since then, although critics maintain that the government overstates the U.S. poverty level because it counts as impoverished people who in generations past would be considered as not living in poverty.

Numerous explanations are suggested for recent poverty trends. An example is many studies focus on the causes of the decline in the low-skilled wage rate. The demand-side explanations include the loss of manufacturing jobs. Another study emphasise demographic components of poverty. For example, an increased number of families headed by females is associated with increased poverty. Poverty among blacks in central cities has worsened. Reasons are suggested for poverty among inner-city blacks include discrimination, spatial mismatches between residence and job location , and negative neighbood effects.

When poverty rates across geographic areas increase it’s because in both person-specific and place-specific characteristics. An example would be an area having a higher rate of poverty. It contains disproportionately higher population that shares demographic groups with greater poverty. Area poverty may relate to place-specific factors, such economic performance. Area economy sufficiently reduce the poverty rate among all groups, that overall poverty rate is lower. Relative poverty rate particular demographic groups may be interrelated with area economic conditions.

Regrading person-specific characteristics, poverty rates relatively higher nationally most minority groups. A factor suggested to underlie higher minority poverty is discrimination or racial preferences. It is argued that the key to reducing poverty among minorities is to improve their quality of education and to increase their education completion rates. Focusing on supply side, argues that reservation wages of blacks lead them to not accept jobs. Relatively means that higher rates of blacks return to crime is a reason for this. Poverty rates also are higher for female-headed families across an racial groups. Besides being sole wage earner for the family, female family heads are disproportionately younger, less educated, and less skilled. Child-care constraints can adversely affect their job performance. Female heads receive lower wage rates. A families household income with both parents are 75,062 , but with a single family household would be around 35,761. When it comes to the difference in earning men and women make are; men is around 74.8% and women around 62.2%.

Low-skilled workers in general are more likely to experience poverty. One suggested primary cause for the relative decline of low-skilled wages is a relative demand shirt, that has favored high-skilled occupations . Labor force participation fell for those whose wages dropped. An example would be interrelationship between demographic performance. Structural changes and demand shifts particularly hurt blacks who are relatively lesser skilled and educated. Relative growth in the supply of college graduates relative to high school dropouts. Increased immigration of disproportionately low-skilled workers, also has been increased male wage inequality. Poverty has been done at the metropolitan level.

15.3 million children are living in poverty in the united states. A state-level data found that 2.5 children are homeless in a year. This data was found by the National Center of Family homelessness. Around 9.3% of seniors are rising in poverty. Reasons being that there is a increase in health care, which increases poverty level to 14.5%. Some of the highest races in poverty are Native American(27.6%) , Blacks(26.2%), and Hispanics(23.4%). With the lowest levels are poverty are Whites (12.4%) and Asians (12.3%). Reasons are that the races with high poverty are less educated.

Roughly 12.3% of US households are food insecure. Around 15.6 million households have a difficulty providing food for all their family members. Reasons being that they have lack of resources. Rates of food insecurity were sadly higher than the national average for households with incomes near or below the Federal poverty line. 61% of food-insecure households in the USDA survey reported that in the previous month, they had participated in one or more of the three largest Federal food and nutrition assistance programs. One of these programs is known as SNAP, or the Supplemental Nutrition Program.   

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Causes of Poverty. (2021, Apr 16). Retrieved from

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