Black children among the nation’s poorest

Freddie Allen | 9/30/2013, 12:14 p.m.
As the American economy stumbles through an uneven economic recovery, Black children continue to suffer record levels of poverty, including ...
Kourtney Marie Davis, 3, sits in a chair as her mother Angelic Davis talks about being homeless in Dallas, during an interview on Dec. 12, 2011. The recession and unemployment over the past few years have created a “manmade disaster” that has caused a steady increase in the number of homeless children in the state, making Texas the worst place in the nation for homeless children, according to a report by the National Center on Family Homelessness. Though the economy and employment seems to be improving, continued cuts to benefits for the economically disadvantaged may push more families into the streets. LM Otero

According to a report on SNAP by the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, a research and analysis group focused on fiscal policy and public programs that affect low- and moderate-income families and individuals: “The individuals who would lose basic food assistance under the House provision are among the poorest people in the nation. While on SNAP they have monthly average incomes of just 22 percent of the poverty line, about $2,500 a year.”

CBPP reported that a third of those that would lose benefits if the House bill passes are Black.

“By cutting food assistance for at least 3.8 million low-income people in the coming year – including some of the very poorest Americans, many children and senior citizens, and even veterans – this cruel, if not heartless, legislation could jeopardize a vital stepping stone to many families who are still struggling to find work or who depend on low-wage jobs,” said Robert Greenstein, president of CBPP, in a statement following the House vote on the SNAP bill. “As the nation slowly climbs out of the deepest recession in decades – with 22 million people still unemployed or underemployed – millions of families rely on SNAP to help feed their children.”

“For decades, policymakers have shared a bipartisan commitment to reducing hunger and hardship,” said Greenstein in the statement. “This legislation turns its back on that commitment. Senators should firmly reject these harsh cuts and send the president a bill that does not take food off the table of many of our most vulnerable fellow Americans.”

In a statement on the latest Census Bureau report, Marian Wright Edelman, president of the Children’s Defense Fund, said, “Ensuring children’s health and well-being is a test not only of our morality but of our common and economic sense.”

She continued: “We need to create jobs, jobs, jobs and jobs that pay enough to lift people from poverty. When will enough of our leaders get it?”