Sample Research Paper

Words 2,500

Approximately 20 % of US children under the age of six live in poverty, the highest rate of all developed countries. (Child Poverty and Family Income) The 1990s ushered in the first generation of young adults to bear the imprint of major turmoil in America’s fundamental institutions the family, economy, and government. An extraordinary number of youth grew up during the 1970s and 1980s with single moms, absent fathers, and increasingly complicated and often momentary living arrangements. For many, poverty was a way of life and trusts on welfare an economic necessity (Bianchi 1999). A rapidly restructuring and increasingly bifurcated economy meant that the parents of today’s young adults often confront job insecurity, low or declining wages, and downward social mobility (Morris and Western 1999).

  • In 1996, 20% of American children lived in families with cash incomes below the poverty line.
  • The percentage of children in poverty has stayed near or slightly above 20% since 1981.
  • Children under age 6 are more often found in families with incomes below the poverty line than children ages 6 to 17. In 1996, 23% of children under age 6 lived in poverty, compared to 18% of older children.
  • Children with two married parents are much less likely to be living in poverty than children living only with their mothers. In 1996, 10% of children in two-parent families were living in poverty, compared to 49% in female-householder families.
  • This contrast by the family structure is particularly pronounced among certain racial and ethnic minorities. For example, in 1996, 14% of black children in married-couple families lived in poverty, compared to 58% of black children in female-householder families. Twenty-nine % of Hispanic children in married-couple families lived in poverty, compared to 67% in female-householder families. (Child Poverty and Family Income)

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