The Newest Census Poverty Data
The U.S. Census Bureau released 2014 state-level poverty estimates today. Child poverty rates in Vermont have not decreased. In fact, estimates for poverty and deep poverty for 2014 are both slightly higher than they were for 2013.
Safety net programs are designed to protect children from the damaging effects of poverty. Lessening deprivation during periods of economic hardship helps protect kids’ opportunities for the future.
Throughout the recession, participation in Vermont’s safety net programs increased along with a rise in the poverty rate. Poverty rates nationwide and in Vermont still remain well above pre-recession levels.
Children are poor at a greater rate than the overall population. In 2014, an estimated 15.8% of children in Vermont lived in households with incomes below the federal poverty threshold. In 2014, the threshold for a family of two adults and two children was $24,008 and for one adult and one child was $16,317.
Of children who are poor, 48% live in deep poverty – defined as an income that is half the amounts above.
For those in poverty and especially in deep poverty, current levels of support are not enough to prevent deprivation. Adequate investment is needed in order to counteract the long-term consequences of poverty.