Poverty Essay

1426 Words6 Pages
The condition of having little or no wealth or few material possessions. That is the definition of poverty according to the Oxford English Dictionary. ("poverty, n.”) However; poverty has many other definitions to the people that experience it. Poverty is choosing whether or not a child can go to the good school district and poverty is not knowing when another meal will be set on the dinner table. It is the fear of not knowing what might have to be given up next. Although the number of Americans living in poverty has dropped in the past two years and and the number of Americans living in poverty is not significantly higher than it was in 2007, the year before the most recent recession, poverty is a serious problem in the United States because…show more content…
In fact, in 2016 12.7 percent of the American population were living in poverty. According to the 2016 United States Census 46 million Americans had an income that placed them below the poverty line. (Bureau, US Census) This number is 15 million more than the year 2000. Most of the poor have employment in minimum wage jobs with $7.25 to support sometimes large families in poverty. (Edelman, Peter) “About 60 percent of households in poverty have income that comes from work.” (Edelman, Peter) The income of six million people are composed of food stamps alone. For a family of three that is about six thousand dollars. This system was challenged by the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program in 1996. Before TANF was instituted welfare helped about sixty-eight percent of children, now it only helps twenty-seven percent. The main issue with TANF is the legality. Every American had the right to receive welfare and could not be turned away, TANF gives states the right to turn away people that may need it the most. Now that there is a legal right to obtain welfare such as food stamps the number of participants has risen to 48 million from the 26.3 million during the recession. (Edelman, Peter) Welfare is in place to help the 12.7 percent of Americans that are struggling in the midst of poverty. Of those affected, teenagers suffering from poverty in college are having difficulties of another…show more content…
The poverty rate of students living off campus and not with family is 51.8 percent. (Bureau, US Census) When off-campus college students are excluded from the official poverty count, the percentage is dropped by at least half of a percentage point. From 2009 to 2011 about 15.2 percent of the United States population was under the poverty line but when the off-campus students were excluded the total number dropped to about 14.5 percent. (Bureau, US Census) “According to the National Center for Educational Statistics 29 percent of students nationwide have household incomes below $20,000, 79 percent work full or part time in addition to taking classes, and 35 percent are parents or have dependents.” (Gonzalez, Jennifer) This means that at least twenty-nine percent of the student population is suffering from poverty. Scholarships are sometimes the only thing that get the child of a low income family into college. However, that money can be lost with grades or the money could run out half way through their education. Once that money is gone, if that students has no other means of paying for the college sometimes the only option is to drop out. Not only is poverty affecting teenagers in college, it is affecting children as

More about Poverty Essay

Open Document