Poverty Relapse in Appalachia
Poverty in America does not only reside in our urban areas, however a large portion of Americans who live in Appalachia have fallen victim to poverty. Coal-mining towns at one time use to be major industrial powerhouses of America. However, over the span of time these areas in Appalachia have fallen below the poverty line and lack the local resources to help their own citizens. Poverty in Appalachia is due to economic downfall and lack of government support, these once flourishing coal towns are now pits of poverty and are difficult for younger generations to escape.
Poverty in Appalachia is more prominent now than ever. This is because of the downfall and decrease of mining industries in which these places use to thrive off of. Mining industries are decreasing, because other forms of energy have been discovered and are being used. In Worlds Apart Cynthia Duncan focused on the region of Appalachia coal towns. This region in America is one of the highest populated areas where a very large majority of the residents live in poverty (Duncan). Alana Semuels, a journalist for The Atlantic wrote, “One-third of the region (Appalachia) lives in poverty. In one eastern Kentucky County in 2009, government benefits accounted for more than half of the county’s personal income” (Semuels). Poverty has become embedded in this area over the past couple of decades. Older generations once flourished in this region, because they worked in coal mines, however over the span of time these large coal industries have moved out of these areas. Semuels stated that, “…when the nation started to move away from coal-fired power plants, and giant companies pulled up stakes and closed down mines, shedding 7,000 jobs in just three y...
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... graduate from high school and college. Thus encouraging the youth to go onto higher and greater things in terms of education and employment.
Poverty in Appalachia is due to economic downfall and is a rampant problem in our country. Industrial regions that depended on coal mining for majority of its region’s income become devastated when the mining industries left town. With poverty comes many other issues such as children and young adults who do not reach their full capacity due to lack of educational resources, rises in rates of drug use and production, and a higher percentage of people who begin to withdraw a welfare check. Youth that grow up in these areas often neither leave the area nor gain a higher education. Government support like food stamps are not doing our people in Appalachia enough justice they need help educating their youth and creating jobs.
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