U.S. Ranks Second Worst in UNICEF Study of Child Relative Poverty in 35 Richer Nations

Saturday, June 02, 2012
(photo: Richard McKeever, flickr)
Based on the assessment of one leading international children’s organization, the U.S. has one of the worst child-poverty rates among wealthy nations.
Nearly a quarter (23.1%) of young Americans (17 and younger) are living in relative poverty, according to UNICEF. Relative poverty is defined as “living in a household in which disposable income, when adjusted for family size and composition, is less than 50% of the national median income.”
The rate is even higher for children living in single parent homes (44.3%), in households of three or more kids (33.8%), with parents possessing “low education” (58%) or who have “low work intensity” (72%).
Of the 35 nations studied, only Romania had a higher percentage of children living in relative poverty. Iceland and Finland had the lowest rates at 4.7% and 5.3%. Among the larger nations, Germany was measured at 8.5%, France at 8.8%, the United Kingdom at 12.1%, Canada at 13.3%, Japan at 14.9% and Italy at 15.9%.
There was one category in which the U.S. even ranked below Romania: the child poverty gap, which measures the gap between the poverty line and the median income of those below the poverty line.
-Noel Brinkerhoff, David Wallechinsky
To Learn More:
U.S. Leads Developed World in Child Abuse Death Rate (by Noel Brinkerhoff and David Wallechinsky, AllGov)
Record Increase of Americans Living in Poverty (by David Wallechinsky and Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)


Tex 12 years ago
how can they be so nuts? they have an agenda. the median is the middle number and is a totally useless measure of well being. by definition half of the households will be below the median and half above it. if half the households had an income of $1million/year and half had incomes of $1.1million/year we still have half living in their definition of poverty. the us poor have more stuff (bigger living spaces, more autos, washing machines, vacuum cleaners, air conditioners, etc, etc) than the average european and way, way more than in most other regions.

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