Of Black Children In Extreme Poverty Hits Record High
number of Black children living in extreme poverty is at its highest
level in 23 years, according to an analysis released by the Children’s
Defense Fund. Despite several years of a booming economy, nearly
one million Black children in 2001 lived in a family making less
than half the federal poverty line (disposable income below $7,064
for a family of three). The Bush Administration plans to dismantle
Head Start, block Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance
Program, and slash and freeze crucial services designed to help
these poorest children.
Recent studies show overall poverty has declined among Black children,
but fail to show the record-breaking increase in extreme poverty
among these children. Analysis further shows that safety nets
for the worst-off families are being eroded by Bush Administration
policies that cause fewer extremely poor children of all races
to receive cash and in-kind assistance that could help these families.
Children’s Defense Fund President Marian Wright Edelman said these
numbers are clear indicators that as a country, we must invest
in children now instead of passing irresponsible tax breaks for
is shameful that one million Black children are left behind in
extreme poverty,” said Edelman. “It is hard to be poor. It is
harder to be an extremely poor Black child in America when our
President who says we should Leave No Child Behind® is proposing
massive new tax breaks for the richest Americans.”
The Bush Administration claims its plan to dismantle, eliminate,
cut and freeze essential services for children to pay for massive
new tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans will spur the economy.
The most recent Economic Report of the President, which the President’s
own Council of Economic Advisers issued in February 2003, explicitly
acknowledges that tax cuts are unlikely to pay for themselves—let
alone pay for investments in children and working families.#
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