ERIC Number: ED319566
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Oct
Reference Count: N/A
Laboring for Less: Working but Poor in Rural America.
Most of the nonmetropolitan poor live in a household with at least one worker. In 1987, 70% of nonmetro poor family heads who were not ill, disabled, or retired worked for at least part of the year, and 24% worked full time, year-round. The employed proportion of the poor was significantly larger in nonmetro than metro areas. Despite a lengthy economic recovery, poverty rates among nonmetro workers in 1987 were significantly higher than during the recovery of the late 1970s. Poverty rates for nonmetro working families were much higher than for metro working families. These patterns of poverty rates were similar in all sections of the country. About 66% of the nonmetro working poor were found in three occupational categories: services; farming, forestry, and fishing; and operators, fabricators, and laborers. Factors contributing to increases in the nonmetro working poor include: (1) the relatively high nonmetro unemployment rate for this stage of the economic recovery; (2) the large numbers of "discouraged workers" and "involuntarily part-time workers" found in nonmetro areas; (3) decreases in rural wage rates, after adjustment for inflation; (4) relative concentration of nonmetro employment in declining industries; (5) inadequate education and skills; and (6) reductions in federal and state benefits and programs for low-income working families. A number of legislative proposals now before Congress would benefit the rural working poor. The principal linkage between this document and the field of education is provided by a two-page section on "Employment and Training Programs" (p.49-52) and a single table (p.52) comparing Federal spending for such programs for FY 1981 and FY 1989. (SV)
Descriptors: Census Figures, Economic Factors, Economically Disadvantaged, Employment, Employment Patterns, Heads of Households, Low Income, Policy Formation, Poverty, Rural Areas, Rural Economics, Rural Population, Rural Urban Differences, Underemployment, Unemployment, Working Poor
Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 236 Massachusetts Ave., N.E., Suite 305, Washington, DC 20002.
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Aspen Inst. for Humanistic Studies, New York, NY.; Ford Foundation, New York, NY.
Authoring Institution: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Washington, DC.