High level of poverty population

(Ref. 401)
Problem Components
Policy issue area: Society
Policy issue: Poverty
Description: Number of families living below poverty line remains unacceptably high.
Symptoms: Number of people under the poverty line ($13,500 in cash income for a family of four) has grown from 4.5 million in 1978 to 36 million in 1990; number of children living below poverty line increased by 15%; one-third of female- headed households live in poverty; 16 million workers are unemployed or significantly underemployed.
Causes: Cutbacks in social programs; unemployment caused by lack of education and training; increase of households headed by women.
Cost of problem: Cost of 16 million unemployed is $400 billion annually; plus loss of contribution to gross national product (at least 4% annually).
Solution Components
Resources: Universities and research institutes; Federal, state and local governments; business and industry; charitable and concerned organizations.
Goal: 1. Develop strategies to handle the diversity of reasons for poverty:
a. For the working poor: (1) Increase the minimum wage (2) Provide health insurance or medical care (3) Earned income tax credit to offset Social Security taxes (4) Child care for working parents, directly or through subsidies
b. Single parent families: (1) A workfare program (2) A national program of child support enforcement
c. Public assistance recipients: Education and training; work opportunities
2. Pursue policies that stimulate economic growth, and provide programs of employment and income maintenance
3. Raise the standard of living and improve the quality of life of every American:
a. Satisfy basic needs of food, shelter, and medical care
b. Restore support to the long-term unemployed
4. Target education, job training and child care programs to female-headed households
5. Guaranteed Job Opportunity Program, to work on useful local community projects, including infrastructure repair and housing
6. Improved education and job training to the unemployed and underemployed.
Program area: Community development
Program-remedy: 1. Welfare reform, to include workfare, child care, education and training programs, and other programs to facilitate exit from the welfare trap
2. Job training and other employment-supporting programs.
Program-prevent: National policy to maintain growing economy with full employment.
Cost of program: -
Beneficiaries: Underprivileged members of society; the working poor.

Return to Exhibit H

Return to Contents