46.2 Million People in Poverty for 2010

The Census released a comprehensive report on poverty, income and health insurance coverage in the United States for 2010. There were 46.18 million people living in poverty, in the United States. The Census population for 2010 was 305,688,000. This means that 15.1% of people in the United States are below the poverty thresholds, or one in 6.6 people.




This is the highest number of people living in poverty for 52 years. To really grasp how dire the situation is, one needs to know the United States poverty levels, shown in the table below.




The total number of households was 118,682,000 for 2010. The Census likes to group people by families instead of individuals. As we can see from the above table, when one is an individual, the poverty rates are unbelievably, unrealistically low. That's $928.25 per month for one person. Think about it. How many places in the United States can you rent a studio, or 1 bedroom for that $928/month, never mind buy gas, clothing and even shampoo. Food stamp eligibility is based on the above poverty thresholds as well.

Women and single mother poverty levels are out of the stratosphere. 46.9% of all kids living in poverty are with single mothers. 31.6% of all female householders are in poverty. A householder is defined as the one who pays the rent or mortgage. In other words, just being having a kid and an a dead-beat Dad gives you almost an almost 50-50 chance of ending up in poverty.

22% of all kids are living in poverty, or 1 in 4.5. Since you don't have fractional people (yet), basically one in 4 kids are living in poverty.

If you are disabled, between the ages of 16 and 64, the poverty rate is 27.9%. Literally being an independent female guarantees being poor more than being hit by a car or injured to the point of being disabled.

27.4% of the 38,965,000 black people are in poverty, up 1.6% from 2009 and Hispanics are 26.6% of the 49,869,000 total. Bear in mind the Census refuses to categorize anyone by immigration status, so the Hispanic numbers have illegal immigrants in the tally. The Census also doesn't break down the Hispanics by real country of origin, but includes Mexico. 26.7% of 21,403,000 people who are not born in the United States and also not citizens are living in poverty.

Younger people with parents are in luck. The moving back in, or doubling up as the Census calls it, increased by 2 million from 2007 to Spring 2011.

Doubled-up households are defined as households that include at least one "additional" adult: a person 18 or older who is not enrolled in school and is not the householder, spouse or cohabiting partner of the householder. In spring 2007, prior to the recession, doubled-up households totaled 19.7 million. By spring 2011, the number of doubled-up households had increased by 2.0 million to 21.8 million and the percent rose by 1.3 percentage points from 17.0 percent to 18.3 percent.

14.2% of young adults, ages 25-34, are living with Mom and Dad. If Mom and Dad weren't around, the Census estimates an astounding 45.3% of this age group has an income below the poverty threshold for a single individual under the age of 65. That's almost half!

From this report, any one claiming the United States is sinking into 3rd world status hasn't done a statistical reality check. We're already there.



you might read their report, the Census did a lot

I'm going to go over income but I want to do some additional calculations. Then, if you notice in the press, no one is really talking about those horrific statistics for women. So much for equality and equal opportunity eh?

Equal rights to starve

Without at least a national goal of full employment, supported by consensus of the people and of our elected representatives, "equal opportunity" is a farce, a contradiction in terms.

See, Full employment: Don't give it up without a fight by Dean Baker and Jared Bernstein (2002, Economic Policy Institute)