Childhood Poverty : A Social Problem Essay

Childhood Poverty : A Social Problem Essay

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The American society faces a countless number of social problems that began several generations ago and that will continue for many more generations to come, but childhood poverty is a social problem that the American society cannot afford to go another generation without greatly reducing the number of children that experience a life in poverty. The United States is home to “More than 16 million children – 22% of all children – live in families with incomes below the federal poverty level - $23,550 a year for a family of four” (National Center for Children in Poverty, 2014). Childhood poverty is a major concern for the American society based on poverty’s ability to have such negative effects on a child’s physical and mental health, the detrimental impacts that poverty has on a child’s ability to learn, and an increased rate of a poverty stricken child continuing the cycle of intergenerational poverty. Research regarding childhood poverty has provided the United States with many contributing factors to childhood poverty, yet it continues to be one of the most detrimental social problems of our time. It is up to the American society, as a whole, to implement programs to reduce the number of children living in poverty and come together to make a difference for the enormous amount of children living in poverty right here in our own “backyard”.
The first area of concern with children living in poverty is the negative affect that poverty has on a child’s health. “Compared with non-poor children, poorer children in the United States experience diminished physical health as measured by a number of indicators of health status and outcomes” (Brooks-Gunn & Duncan, 1997). Children who are born in poverty are more likely to be born at a low b...


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...acts that poverty has on a child’s ability to learn, and an increased rate of a poverty stricken child continuing the cycle of intergenerational poverty. Just this year, the American people contributed $1,586,000,000 in a few days attempting to win the Powerball jackpot imagine the difference $1,586,000,000 could make for families and children living in poverty. It appears society has their priorities mixed up, it is time to contribute and invest into our children who are our future rather than attempting to strike it rich. The American dream may not appear to be reality for the children living in poverty, but the American people have the power to change that appearance and make the American Dream reality for every child born and raised in poverty by investing in the children and families that are considered the most vulnerable population in our society, the poor.

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