UNH Finds Child Poverty Continues to Decline but Racial-Ethnic Disparities Persist

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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

DURHAM, N.H. – Between 2014 and 2015 child poverty fell for all race-ethnicities except Asians, but patterns in levels and characteristics of child poverty persist, according to researchers at the Carsey School of Public Policy at the University of New Hampshire.

Black and Hispanic children experienced some of the largest declines in poverty between 2014 and 2015, but nationwide child poverty among black children (36.5 percent) is still nearly three times as high as those among non-Hispanic white and Asian children (12.5 and 12.1 percent, respectively). Poverty rates are highest for black children in the Midwest and South (43.2 and 36 percent) and for Hispanic children in the Northeast (33.3 percent). Black child poverty is highest in rural places and Hispanic child poverty is highest in cities.

“Given the well-established connection between child poverty and brain development, educational attainment, later labor market participation and long-term health incomes, the high incidence of place and race based child poverty in the U.S. is of particular concern,” the researchers said. “Closer attention to these disparities may nudge policy makers to think carefully about the context of place in efforts to alleviate poverty and increase youth opportunity.”

View the full report here: https://carsey.unh.edu/publication/2015-child-poverty. The research was conducted by Jessica Carson, vulnerable families research scientist at the Carsey School; Beth Mattingly, director of research on vulnerable families at the Carsey School; and Andrew Schaefer, a vulnerable families research scientist at the Carsey School.

The Carsey School of Public Policy conducts research, leadership development, and engaged scholarship relevant to public policy. They address pressing challenges, striving for innovative, responsive, and equitable solutions at all levels of government and in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors.

The University of New Hampshire is a flagship research university that inspires innovation and transforms lives in our state, nation and world. More than 16,000 students from all 50 states and 71 countries engage with an award-winning faculty in top ranked programs in business, engineering, law, health and human services, liberal arts and the sciences across more than 200 programs of study. UNH’s research portfolio includes partnerships with NASA, NOAA, NSF and NIH, receiving more than $100 million in competitive external funding every year to further explore and define the frontiers of land, sea and space. 

Editor's Notes: 

Editors: Jessica Carson can be reached at jessica.carson@unh.edu and 603-219-3321. Beth Mattingly can be reached at beth.mattingly@unh.edu and 240-593-4297. Andrew Schaefer can be reached at 603-862-3603. UNH Media Relations has an on-site ReadyCam broadcast studio available through VideoLink (617-340-4300) for television interviews and an ISDN line for radio interviews.