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

September 3 – 6, 2019

The Labor Department reports the unemployment rate remained 3.7%, near the lowest level in five decades, for the third straight month.


The black unemployment rate fell to a record low in August, helped by a jump in the number of black women on the job.


The idea of a “universal basic income” is gaining traction among Silicon Valley titans and Democratic presidential hopefuls, despite a national trend toward more restrictions on public benefits.


Opportunity zones were created as part of the Trump tax law to lure investment to distressed areas. But much of the money is fueling real-estate developments targeting the affluent.


Hotter neighborhoods tend to be poorer in dozens of major U.S. cities. That extra heat can have serious health effects for those living there.


Researchers at the University of Oregon used Census data to make the first nationwide map of what they call “plumbing poverty”—households that lack running


A year ago, a federal court said enforcing homeless camping bans was unconstitutional if a city doesn’t have enough shelter beds. That upended policies and roiled politics across the West, where most of the nation’s unsheltered homeless population lives.


When homelessness doubled in a town in Pierce County, a hard-line group on Facebook took an aggressive approach, including posting the photos and license plates of panhandlers, and those that gave money to them.


Occupational licensing laws can block the formerly incarcerated from a stable career.


Criminal justice changes have focused on getting people out of prisons, but once people are released, they have struggled to find a place to live.


“It was envisioned that this was going to reduce costs, reduce mass incarceration,” Sen. Sharif Street said. “Now, we’re in a place talking about it may increase mass incarceration.”


Pregnant behind bars: A Downstate prison opens a special wing for mothers-to-be and postpartum offenders


About 7% of children in Wisconsin have had either one or both biological parents serving prison time, according to the Annie E. Casey Foundation


Most hospitals do not frequently take patients to court over medical debt. But since 2015, Carlsbad Medical Center, in New Mexico, has filed lawsuits by the thousands.