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University of Wisconsin–Madison

IRP Poverty Dispatch

Poverty-related issues in the news, from the Institute for Research on Poverty

October 7 – 11, 2019

Utah may be a bellwether showing how far states can go in customizing Medicaid.

 

Starting Jan. 1, the state will require the eight companies that manage pharmacy benefits under Medicaid to use the same preferred prescription drug list, instead of eight individual lists.

 

The administration’s proposal, the third food-stamp rule change since December, would reduce spending by $4.5 billion over five years and cut benefits for one in five families.

 

Disadvantaged and minority children show as much academic growth as much as advantaged kids in other schools, according to a new study from Ohio State

 

Their average incomes were also 25% higher than peers who didn’t receive four or more years of this intervention.

 

In a national survey, 30 of 50 states struggled to help school districts figure out how to pay for the added costs of transportation for children in foster care. A dozen reported it was “very or extremely challenging.”

 

California Governor Gavin Newsom signed a law that prohibits landlords from rejecting low-income tenants who use housing vouchers and assistance programs to pay their rent. It protects Section 8 applicants.

 

Mental illness, substance abuse and physical disabilities are much more pervasive in L.A. County’s homeless population than previously reported, a Times analysis finds. The L.A. Homeless Services Authority narrowly interpreted its data, producing much lower numbers.

 

Jailing people and extending probation for failing to pay costs, fines, and restitution has, according to the ACLU “turned Pennsylvania’s jails into a form of modern debtors’ prisons.”

 

September 30 – October 4, 2019

The U.S. unemployment rate fell in September to a new five-decade low of 3.5% as employers added a modest 136,000 jobs.

 

The government’s latest monthly jobs report took on added significance after a week of otherwise disappointing economic news.

 

The number of people living below the poverty line in New York City dropped to historic lows as the economy continued to grow, according to newly released federal census data and the mayor’s office.

 

On the Illinois side of the Mississippi River, many families struggling financially can get health care, thanks to Medicaid expansion. Meanwhile, their neighbors on the Missouri side don’t qualify.

 

It’s a Friday morning in late August, and Nikeia Diaz waits with others outside courtroom 2350 at the Mecklenburg County Courthouse. What happens in court

 

 

In California, most child support payments to parents on public assistance go to the government–not the family. A recently passed set of bills would change that and eliminate interest on chil…

 

An array of state attorneys general, public health organizations and immigrant groups says the policy is discriminatory and illegal.

 

September 23 – 27, 2019

The gap between the richest and the poorest U.S. households is now the largest it’s been in the past 50 years, the U.S. Census Bureau says.

 

Almost a third of Syracuse’s population lives in poverty, U.S. Census data shows.

 

While both the national and Texas poverty rates fell, the individual poverty rate in the Houston metro region ticked up in 2018, with one in seven individuals falling below the poverty line.

 

A third of Cleveland’s residents live in poverty, and the child poverty rate tops 50%. Countywide, about 215,000 people are in poverty, about 92,000 in the suburbs.

 

Economists, city officials, and some advocates were gratified to see some positive fluctuation in poverty, as well as in income.

 

Forty affordable housing complexes are in an innovative federal program.

 

 

A long-awaited update to federal overtime rules means about 1.3 million workers will be entitled to extra pay when they work more than 40 hours a week. But critics say it doesn’t go far enough.

 

The plan is intended to cut eligibility among families considered less needy.

 

A new report has concluded that enforcement of the Safe Drinking Water Act is lacking in poor communities, placing public health at risk.