Thursday, January 27, 2011

Plight of the Working Poor -- the Fastest Growing Class in America


Quote from The Working Poor: Invisible in America by David K. Shipler:

"Most of the people I write about in this book do not have the luxury of rage. They are caught in exhausting struggles. Their wages do not lift them far enough from poverty to improve their lives, and their lives, in turn, hold them back. The term by which they are described, 'working poor,' should be an oxymoron. Nobody who works hard should be poor in America."

Did you know that:
The Winter 2010-2011 Working Poor Families Project Policy Brief revealed:
  • Over 10 million low-income working families in the United States, an increase of nearly a quarter million from the previous year.
  • 45 million people, including 22 million children, lived in low-income working families, an increase of 1.7 million people from 2008.
  • 43 percent of working families with at least one minority parent were low income, nearly twice the proportion of white working families (22 percent).
  • Income inequality continues to grow with the richest 20 percent of working families taking home 47 percent of all income and earning 10 times that of low-income working families.
  • Over than half of the U.S. labor force (55 percent) has “suffered a spell of unemployment, a cut in pay, a reduction in hours or have become involuntary part-time workers” since the recession began in December 2007.
Quote from Half in Ten, a national campaign: “Call it a war on poverty, call it expanding the middle class, call it promoting economic security. Call it whatever you want, but start making the connections between the plight of middle-class and lower-income Americans, and get involved.”

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