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University of Wisconsin–Madison
Poverty-related issues in the news, from the Institute for Research on Poverty

Day: July 29, 2010

Subsidized Jobs Programs

Job subsidies also provide help to private sector, By Catherine Rampell, July 28, 2010, New York Times: “States are putting hundreds of thousands of people directly into jobs through programs reminiscent of the more ambitious work projects of the Great Depression. But the new efforts have a twist: While the wages are being paid by the government, most of the participants are working for private companies. The opportunity to simultaneously benefit struggling workers and small businesses has helped these job subsidies gain support from liberals and conservatives. Congress is now considering whether to extend the subsidy, which would expire in September, for an additional year. A House vote is expected on Thursday or Friday. Despite questions about whether the programs displace existing workers, many economists have argued that direct job creation programs are a more cost-effective way to put some of the nation’s 14.6 million unemployed back to work than indirect alternatives like tax credits and construction projects. The average duration of unemployment continues to break records, after all, and studies have shown that the longer people are out of work, the less employable they become…”

Race to the Top Finalists

18 states and District of Columbia are finalists for education grants, By Robbie Brown, July 27, 2010, New York Times: “Eighteen states and the District of Columbia were named as finalists on Tuesday in the second round of a national competition for $3.4 billion in federal financing to support an overhaul of education policies. The much-anticipated decision by the federal Education Department eliminated almost half of the 35 states that entered the competition, called Race to the Top. The finalists are Arizona, California, Colorado, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and South Carolina. Winners will be announced in September, and federal officials say they expect 10 to 15 of the finalists to receive financing…”

2010 Kids Count Data Book

  • More children living in poverty in Kentucky, Indiana, annual survey shows, By Deborah Yetter, July 26, 2010, Louisville Courier-Journal: “The number of children living in poverty has increased in Kentucky and Indiana, following a national trend of high unemployment and growing poverty in families, according to the latest ‘Kid Count,’ an annual state-by-state survey of child well-being by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. The numbers are alarming because of the adverse effect poverty has on children’s health and achievement, said Terry Brooks, executive director of Kentucky Youth Advocates, which contributed to the annual report…”
  • Well-being of kids falters, By Robert King, July 27, 2010, Indianapolis Star: “There’s little doubt among experts that the Great Recession has been a blow to children, with their parents losing jobs, their families losing health insurance and cash-strapped governments cutting programs that serve children. But the latest statistical assessment of the well-being of children — the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s 2010 Kids Count report — shows Hoosier kids were struggling before the recession took hold…”
  • More Ohio kids living with single parents, By Catherine Candisky, July 27, 2010, Columbus Dispatch: “Nearly three of every four black children in Ohio live with only one parent, usually their mother – a rate almost three times higher than that of white youngsters. In all, 34 percent of Ohio children, or 870,000 youngsters, reside in single-parent households. That’s a 10 percent increase from a decade ago; only 10 states, all in the South, are worse, according to a report released today…”
  • Michigan kids’ well-being slips, U.S. report reveals, By Catherine Jun, July 27, 2010, Detroit News: “Job insecurity and infant mortality rates in Michigan hover above the national average, pushing Michigan’s ranking in child well-being to its lowest level in more than a decade, according to the national Kids Count report released today. The report, which ranked Michigan 21st-worst for child well-being in the nation, showed that 31 percent of children in 2008 lived in families where no parent had full-time, year-round employment, compared with the national rate of 27 percent…”
  • Wisconsin 10th for child well-being, study shows, By Tia Ghose, July 27, 2010, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: “Wisconsin ranks 10th in the nation for child well-being, according to a study by the Annie E. Casey Foundation released Tuesday. The study, called Kids Count, combined data from the 2008 American Community Survey and several federal and local health statistics. Wisconsin has consistently placed between 10th and 14th for the last decade. The state stood out in its performance on education. Wisconsin ranked fourth in the percentage of teens who attend school or have graduated, and fifth in the percentage of teens who were either working or in school…”
  • Child welfare improving in Missouri, holds steady in Illinois, By Nancy Cambria, July 28, 2010, St. Louis Post-Dispatch: “Missouri children gained slight ground in a national study ranking the quality of life of kids in all 50 states. The Annie E. Casey Foundation released on Tuesday its 2010 Kids Count, an annual analysis of child welfare statistics around the nation. Missouri ranked 31st among all states, an improvement from last year’s 33rd spot. Illinois ranked 24th, the same as last year…”
  • Minnesota still No. 2 in kids’ health but…, By Jeremy Olson, July 25, 2010, Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune: “For the sixth time in nine years, Minnesota was the second-healthiest state for children when evaluating rates of deaths, teen pregnancies, high school dropouts and child poverty, a new national ranking indicates. Still, the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s annual Kids Count report, released Monday, was hardly celebrated by child advocates in the state, who fear Minnesota’s poverty rate — higher than a decade ago — could undermine its success…”
  • More children living in poverty in N.D. and Minnesota, By Ryan Johnson, July 28, 2010, Grand Forks Herald: “The number of children living in poverty rose in both Minnesota and North Dakota in recent years, according to a new report released this week. The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s 21st annual Kids Count report tracks 10 categories of children’s health from 2000 to 2008, ranking states based on how well they did in those factors. New Hampshire took the No. 1 spot in the country, and Minnesota closely followed to get ranked No. 2 for the second consecutive year. North Dakota’s ranking slipped to No. 12 overall, down from No. 7 in 2009’s report…”
  • Utah No. 4 in national child well-being report, By Jasen Lee, July 27, 2010, Deseret News: “Being a child in Utah is better than being a child in almost every other state in the country, a new report shows. According to the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s annual Kids Count Data Book, a national and state-by-state report that includes key measures and statistical trends on the condition of America’s children and families, Utah ranked fourth overall this year – a drop from third in last year’s data book. However, the Beehive State saw improvements in several major indicators studied in the report…”
  • Texas has 3rd-highest teen birthrate among states, study says, By Jan Jarvis, July 26, 2010, Fort Worth Star-Telegram: ” Texas has the third-highest teen birthrate in the nation, according to an annual study that ranked the state in the overall well-being of children. Sixty-four of 1,000 births were to teenage mothers, far higher than the national rate of 43 births per 1,000, according to the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s 2010 Kids Count Data Book. The rate puts Texas 48th among the 50 states in teen births, better than only New Mexico and Mississippi. But it is an improvement over last year, when the state was the worst in the country…”
  • Report: Well-being of state’s kids improves, but poverty rates soar, By Barbara Cotter, July 27, 2010, Colorado Springs Gazette: “Colorado has improved its standing as a place where children can thrive, according to a national study released Tuesday, but researchers note that data used to evaluate the 50 states on the well-being of their kids predate the economic downturn that began in 2008. According to the Annie E. Casey Foundation, a Baltimore-based organization focused on public policy that affects children and families, Colorado’s ranking improved from 22nd in the 2009 report to 20 in the 2010 report. The rankings are based on 10 key indicators that measure how each state’s children are faring…”
  • N.J. ranks high in Kids Count survey for children’s health, education, By Susan K. Livio, July 27, 2010, Star-Ledger: “New Jersey is an expensive place to live, but with its competitive public school system and access to health programs for working poor families, it’s also a good place to raise and educate children, according to the latest Kids Count nationwide survey of child health, wealth and well-being. According to the annual survey, scheduled for release today, New Jersey ranks seventh overall in terms of child health, an improvement from the last year’s study when the state placed ninth…”
  • Georgia still failing its kids, says report, By Craig Schneider, July 27, 2010, Atlanta Journal-Constitution: “Georgia once again stands among the 10 worst states for the care of its children, and some worry that the state has become complacent about its poor performance in such areas as infant mortality, child deaths and low birth-weight babies. The state lags behind the national average on every one of the 10 measures in the 2010 Kids Count data book, a compilation of state and federal information that will be released today…”
  • Child health report uses pre-recession data, By Emily Bregel, July 27, 2010, Chattanooga Times Free Press: “Child advocates in Tennessee and Georgia say a recent ranking of states based on child well-being may be painting a too-rosy picture. The ranking is based on data collected before the economic recession unleashed a wave of unemployment and budget cuts, the advocates say…”
  • Alabama still ranks low in Kids Count data, By Jeff Hansen, July 27, 2010, Birmingham News: “Alabama and much of the Southeast continue to lag the rest of the United States in measures of child well-being, according to today’s release of the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s 2010 Kids Count data book. Alabama ranks 47th this year, according to 10 measures of childhood health, poverty, education and family issues. Alabama’s place near the bottom is no surprise: In the last nine rankings, the state has been 48th six times, 47th twice and 43rd once…”
  • Md. remains middle of the pack in child well-being, By Brent Jones, July 27, 2010, Baltimore Sun: “As the state continues to struggle with a high infant mortality rate that undercuts its relative wealth, Maryland’s overall rank in child well-being remained in the middle of the pack nationally, according to an annual report released by the Baltimore-based Annie E. Casey Foundation. The 2010 Kids Count Databook released Tuesday placed Maryland 25th in overall child well-being, the same ranking as a year ago. Although Maryland has the second-lowest percentage of children living in poverty (10 percent), the state placed 42nd in infant mortality rate, a statistical discrepancy that puzzled the report’s authors…”