A severe global recession has brought heightened attention to poverty in the United States as the poverty rate rose over time, leveling off at 15.0% in 2011. Recent U.S. Census Bureau data demonstrates the persistence of higher poverty rates for African Americans, Latinos, Asian Americans, children, single mothers, people with disabilities, and other groups, for example. An earlier Williams Institute study and other research showed that lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) people were also more vulnerable to being poor, and this study updates and extends that earlier report.
In recent decades, there has been remarkable growth in scientific research examining the multiple ways in which racism can adversely affect health. This interest has been driven in part by the striking persistence of racial/ethnic inequities in health and the empirical evidence that indicates that socioeconomic factors alone do not account for racial/ethnic inequities in health. Racism is considered a fundamental cause of adverse health outcomes for racial/ethnic minorities and racial/ethnic inequities in health.
Economic instability has increased in recent decades and is higher for families with low incomes and Black families. Such instability is thought to be driven primarily by precarious work and unstable family structure. In addition, the social safety net has become less of a stabilizing force for low-income families, in part because benefits are often tied to employment and earnings.
Life expectancy and disease rates in the United States differ starkly among Americans depending on their demographic characteristics and where they live. Although health care systems are taking important steps to reduce inequities, meaningful progress requires interventions outside the clinic, in sectors such as employment, housing, transportation, and public safety. Inequities exist in each of these sectors, and barriers to educational attainment, higher-income jobs, and social mobility limit the opportunity of disadvantaged people to improve their circumstances.
Long Island— the United States’ first suburb—is by many measures an economically prosperous place. However, opportunity is not spread equally on Long Island. Long-standing discrimination and residential segregation created and maintains racial disparities, with black Long Islanders experiencing more limited access to employment, lower incomes, and greater financial insecurity.
The economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the precarious situation of renters in the US and the routine risk of eviction when hardship strikes. Millions of renters faced financial hardship even before the pandemic, and these hardships and eviction risks are connected to structural racism. Racial disparities in incomes, homeownership rates, and personal savings all disproportionately protect white households and leave households of color—especially Black mothers—exposed.
The Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has significantly impacted and devastated the world. As the infectionspreads, the projected mortality and economic devastation are unprecedented. In particular, racial and ethnic minorities may be ata particular disadvantage as many already assume the status of a marginalized group. Black Americans have a long-standinghistory of disadvantage and are in a vulnerable position to experience the impact of this crisis and the myth of Black immunity toCOVID-19 is detrimental to promoting and maintaining preventative measures.
As the world struggles with the rapidly evolving pandemic of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), evidence and experience suggest that low-income and marginalized communities in our global society will bear the biggest impact. Weknow this because, with our colleagues in Boston, Haiti, Uganda, and Sierra Leone, we have worked in under-resourced, overstretched, and overwhelmed health systems for our whole careers.
As it confronts the COVID-19 pandemic, the US faces what could be its worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. A successful government response to the economic consequences of the pandemic is critical for sustaining families’ health and well-being and allowing families to remain housed as major sectors of the economy remain closed. The success of this response will partly depend on its effectiveness in reaching the families hardest hit by the loss of jobs and incomes.
This article examines the widespread phenomenon of exorbitant child support debt owed by noncustodial fathers in no- and low-income and predominately Black families. Drawing from qualitative data—including a court-based ethnography and in-depth interviews with lawyers, litigants, and judges—this Article explores the inflated and arbitrary nature of the debt, detailing how states utilize family law rules, child support system practices, and court processes to construct burdensome child support arrears that many poor noncustodial fathers will never have the means to pay off.