Poverty

US Census
US Census Bureau

The latest Census report shows North Carolina continues a slow crawl out of the economic downturn.

In 2012, more people lived below the poverty level in North Carolina than they did the year before.  The Census Bureau’s American Community Survey shows 18% of North Carolinians live in poverty compared to about 16% nationally.

Ed Welniak heads the Income Statistics branch of the Census Bureau.

Raleigh NC
Dave DeWitt

Raleigh is taking more public comment about its food distribution ordinance. 

Monday night's meeting comes nearly a month after police threatened to arrest volunteer groups that were handing out food to the homeless in Moore Square.  A city ordinance prohibits food distribution in public parks without a permit, but at least one group says it had been giving out food on the weekends for six years. 

UNC Center for Civil Rights
UNC Center for Civil Rights

A new report from the UNC Center for Civil Rights highlights the issues faced by some segregated communities in North Carolina.

The report refers to these neighborhoods as “excluded communities.”

“What we’re talking about are communities that are somehow not fully included in the political, social, civic, and economic life of the state of North Carolina,” says Peter Gilbert, the author of the report

Dr. Leslie Smith speaks on the State of Things.
boonesunriserotary.org

This episode was a rebroadcast.  The program originally aired on Monday, February 25, 2013.

When Leslie Smith was 24 years old, she was in a fire. After spending 3 months at the Jaycee Burn Center in Chapel Hill, she was released. Smith told Host Frank Stasio “It took me about ten years to recover from those injuries.”

Google Images
Google Images / Google Images

Last weekend, Raleigh police stopped a charity organization from distributing food to the needy in downtown Raleigh. The action led to criticism from community groups.

A Duke University study found a link between poverty and smoking in adolescents.
Valentin Ottone via Flickr, Creative Commons

Researchers at Duke University have been studying the affect of poverty and parenting on substance abuse in adolescents.  The findings suggest self-control for teens is influenced by economic status earlier in life.  The study shows children growing up in poverty are more likely to smoke as adults. 

Father and son relaxing in a living room, a scene from American Winter film.
http://www.americanwinterfilm.com/families

Gene Nichol, Director of the Center on Poverty, Work & Opportunity at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, said on The State of Things today that the financial collapse really hurt the poor but that the problem is multifaceted.

Dr. Leslie Smith speaks on the State of Things.
boonesunriserotary.org

When Leslie Smith was 24 years old, she was in a fire. After spending 3 months at the Jaycee Burn Center in Chapel Hill, she was released. Smith told Host Frank Stasio “It took me about ten years to recover from those injuries.”

“I had bandages from my neck down to my thighs where my burns were, and then from my thighs down to my ankles where they had taken skin to do skin grafting operations. So I literally was covered from ankle to neck in bandages.”

On Tuesday night in Greensboro the temperature is expected to drop into the teens and shelters are expecting to be at or near capacity. Four years ago there was a significant rise in the number of people seeking shelter during the winter months. Greensboro didn’t have enough beds and on many cold nights dozens of people had to sleep on floors. The city responded by opening a half dozen winter emergency shelters for frigid nights like tonight. Reverend Mike Aiken says those facilities opened December 1st and will be packed this week.

A nnational report shows the number of working teenagers and young adults is at its lowest point in 50 years. 

Children's advocates say poverty continues to be a problem when it comes to kids' health. The non-profit Action for Children North Carolina is out with its annual Child Health Report Card. The state scored a D in child poverty, with more than 25% of children under 18 living in poverty. Action for Children's Laila Bell says that affects the health statistics.

The economic downturn hit North Carolina harder than much of the country, and it will take the state longer to recover. That's the conclusion of a new report from UNC's Global Research Institute.

Since January, activists, journalists, non-profit workers and others have traveled around North Carolina to meet the state’s impoverished families. The idea behind the “Truth and Hope Putting a Face on Poverty in North Carolina Tour” is to understand those who live below the poverty line as people, rather than as statistics, and to hear their stories. The tour traveled 2000 miles and visited 27 different communities.

Several state groups will hold a summit this weekend to report on poverty in North Carolina.

Documentary: It's very cold. You have people living who don't have food to eat, who don't have jobs to go to.

So Rich, So Poor

Jul 24, 2012

More than 20 million people in the United States are living in extreme poverty at this moment.

That means that the income for a family of 4 is half below the poverty line, or $11,000. Six million people’s incomes consist only of food stamps. These are shocking numbers, and Peter Edelman says most people are not familiar with the bleak reality of why extreme poverty exists. Edelman is the author of “So Rich, So Poor: Why it’s so Hard to End Poverty in America”

So Rich, So Poor

Jun 19, 2012

More than 20 million people in the United States are living in extreme poverty at this moment. That means that the income for a family of 4 is half below the poverty line, or $11,000. Six million people’s incomes consist only of food stamps.

The number of residents in the Triangle living in poverty is about 14-and-a-half percent and growing.  A group of community leaders met in Durham yesterday to try to address the problem. 

Community, political and business leaders took part in a “poverty simulation.”  Henry Kaestner – co-founder of Durham Cares – played an 8-year-old boy whose family managed to secure health coverage after a lay-off.

Henry Kaestner:  "The relief on her face was not a role-playing relief, it was very real relief."

Cynthia Booth works with Durham’s Parks and Rec Department.

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