In a country well governed, poverty is something to be ashamed of. In a country badly governed, wealth is something to be ashamed of.
- Confucius →

ONE organization has more than 3 million members, its a campaigning organization that fights extreme poverty and preventable diseases, particularly in Africa. They raise public awareness and pressure political leaders to support successful policies and programs that help save lives, help put children in schools, and improve their futures.

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Seven states exhibited statistically significant higher household food insecurity rates than the U.S. national average 2009-2011: 

United States                      14.7%

Mississippi                          19.2%

Texas                                    18.5%

Arkansas                              19.2%

Alabama                               17.4%

Georgia                                 17.4%

Florida                                  16.2%

North Carolina                    17.1%

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  • In 2011, 46.2 million people (15.0 percent) were in poverty.
  • In 2011, 9.5 million (11.8 percent) families were in poverty.
  • In 2011, 26.5 million (13.7 percent) of people ages 18-64 were in poverty.
  • In 2011, 16.1 million (22.0 percent) children under the age of 18 were in poverty.
  • In 2011, 3.6 million (9.0 percent) seniors 65 and older were in poverty.
  • The overall Poverty Rate according to the Supplemental Poverty Measure is 16.0%, as compared with the official poverty rate of 15.1%.
  • Under the Supplemental Poverty Measure, there are 49.1 million people living in poverty, 2.5 million more than are represented by the official poverty measure (46.2 million).

Food Insecurity and Very Low Food Security 

  • In 2011, 50.1 million Americans lived in food insecure households, 33.5 million adults and 16.7 million children.
  • In 2011, 14.9 percent of households (17.9 million households) were food insecure.
  • In 2011, 5.7 percent of households (6.8 million households) experienced very low food security.
  • In 2011, households with children reported food insecurity at a significantly higher rate than those without children, 20.6 percent compared to 12.2percent.
  • In 2011, households that had higher rates of food insecurity than the national average included households with children (20.6 percent), especially households with children headed by single women (36.8 percent) or single men (24.9 percent), Black non-Hispanic households (25.1 percent) and Hispanic households (26.2 percent).
  • In 2011, 8.8 percent of seniors living alone (1 million households) were food insecure.
  • Food insecurity exists in every county in America, ranging from a low of 5 percent in Steele County, ND to a high of 37 percent in Holmes County, MS.
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Poverty can lead to Human Trafficking

Poverty is the root cause for International Human Trafficking. Human Trafficking is an illegal trade of human beings mainly for purposes of commercial sexual exploitation or forced labor. Human Traffickers will go into poverty stricken areas and manipulate the poor for their own malicious benefit. If a country is better off financially, they will be the ones receiving human traffickers. If a country is doing bad financially, thats where the human trafficking will come from.

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Disparities in the District: Poverty is Major Cause of Social Problems in the District of Columbia

  • Poverty rate in District of Columbia is at 19 percent, higher than the poverty rate of national poverty which is 13 percent.
  • Impact of poverty include, poor families and individual living in overcrowded housing leading to poor nutrition, and lacking access to health care. And the stresses of lead to negative behaviors.
  • Family poverty
  • Neighborhood poverty
  • Neighborhood level data shows that the rates of violent crimes and teen pregnancy are high in DC poorest neighborhood than in lower poverty neighborhood.

Violent Crimes

The data for DC showed that the residents living in the poorest neighborhoods face the greatest likelihood of being involved in violent crimes or being crime victims.

School Performance

Children in low income neighborhoods tend to have low scores on standardized reading and math test. Schools in poor neighborhoods often face difficulty attracting and retaining experienced teachers. Students in Grade 4th and 8th grade in DC had the lowest academic performance when compared to students in other school districts with high poverty rates such as Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Houston, New York.

Teen Pregnancy

Before teenagers reach the age of 20, 40 percent of all teens girls become pregnant. Teen mothers are not likely to finish high school, and are often left as single mothers to provide for their child.Research shows that many teens are likely to view parenthood as positive way of improving their lives.

Child Abuse and Neglect

Child abuse and Neglect tend to increase when families fall deeper into poverty. Abused and neglected children often faced delay development, and they are at risk of becoming future substance abusers, aggressive, and depressive. 

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Who would you rather help? 

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Poverty in The Media: Being Seen Getting Heard

  • Public understanding of poverty in the UK is limitted.
  • The main idea of the article is how people can give their views and tell their story when they are presented as case studies in the press, on the radio or on television
  • the roles and responsibilities of voluntary and community organizations
  • opportunities in new media such as mobile phones and internet, and the challenges of reaching the audience.

Nearly 11 million people live below the poverty line. Poverty is under-reported and inadequately reported by the media in the UK.

  • They make it seem like is too difficult to cover, too depressing for the audiences and worth but not “NEWSWORTHY”.
  • Critics report that reporting too often on poverty relies on stereotypes and that it labels people and places.

Journalist say that it can be difficult to give poverty a focus, since its something thats ongoing, rather than a specific event:

  • Journalist says: ” Poverty is worth, not newsworth. the struggle from a media point of view is the choice between an important but dull story and a trivial one thats interesting”.
  • The media is said to be driven by lists, anniversaries, controversies, and the biggest,worst, and greatest stories. 
  • What sells more is celebrity gossip, not stories about ordinary people trying to manage on low income.
  • Bad news sells, unfortunately its what attracts the audiences.
  • If poverty is covered, the media seeks out the most extreme, dramatic cases.

Why is it that the media rather focus on stories on committing crimes,or doing something unusual or difficult, displaying heroism, courage or generosity,rather than poverty??

  • The media considers that their stories are worth telling and are likely to be of great interest to their readers, listeners, or viewers.
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Three films that offer a perspective on how poverty is portrayed by the media in the UK:

The Choir With No Name, Anna Edwards- a film about a choir comprised entirely of homeless people who rehearse every monday evening in a former church hall in king’s Cross, London and the differences it makes to their outlook and aspirations.

Holiday From Poverty, Jez Lewis- a film following four families living in poverty as they take a weeks holiday in a country setting, offering an insight into their lives. It illustrates the power of a holiday to transform their hopes and expectations.

The Car’s Got to go, Barney Snow- another fresh approach, painting a picture through the emotional journey of having a car repossessed.

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