Via Matt Yglesias, the Economic Policy Institute warns that the U.S. child poverty rate is likely to increase more than 50% as a result of rising unemployment (and underemployment). The rate, at 18.0% in 2007, is likely to grow to 27.3% among all children and an astonishing 52.3% for black children.
Tulsa’s 2007 child poverty rate was already 33.0%. If the city sees an increase similar to the rest of the country (though we shouldn’t, as the economic downturn is less pronounced here), a full 50.04% of children in Tulsa will find themselves in poverty as a result of the recession.
Some may dismiss these shifts as likely to be short-lived and return to normal once economic recovery sets in. They need to consider the immediate (pdf) and long-term consequences of child poverty. Although many poverty “spells” are of a short or intermittent duration, the consequences of recession-caused childhood poverty will follow children throughout their lifetimes. First Focus reports that children who fell into poverty during a prior recession grew up to earn 30% less income than those who did not, were three times more likely to be in poverty as an adult, and are about 10 percentage points less likely to be in good health.