ERIC Number: ED451912
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999
Reference Count: N/A
Working Poor Families with Children: A Statistical Portrait. Child Trends Research Brief.
Child Trends, Inc., Washington, DC.
Although having one or more working parents reduces the likelihood that children will live in poverty, it does not provide a guarantee of escaping poverty. This report summarizes results of a project to develop a definition of working poor families and to provide a baseline of descriptive information about them. The primary data sources for the study were the 1987, 1988, and 1990-1993 panels of the Survey of Income and Program Participation, and the Current Population Survey for 1996 and 1997. Working poor families are defined as those in which either two parents worked at least 35 hours per week or a single parent worked at least 20 hours per week and had an income below the federal poverty line. Findings indicated that in 1996, children living in families not meeting the work standard were seven times as likely to be poor as children living in working families. There were substantial differences between working poor families and poor families not meeting the work standard with respect to parent education, home ownership, health insurance coverage, car ownership, and child care costs. The differences illustrate some obstacles to meeting the objectives of welfare reform. There were also important differences between working poor families and more prosperous working families in terms of home and car ownership, paid child care participation, and health insurance. These findings have implications for public policies intended to lift working families with children out of poverty. (KB)
Descriptors: Children, Comparative Analysis, Day Care, Early Childhood Education, Employed Parents, Family Characteristics, Family Environment, Family Income, Health Insurance, Parent Education, Poverty, Welfare Reform, Working Poor
Child Trends, Inc., 4301 Connecticut Avenue, N.W., Suite 100, Washington, DC 20008. Tel: 202-362-5580; Fax: 202-362-5533; Web site: http://www.childtrends.org.
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Freddie Mac Foundation, McLean, VA.; John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Chicago, IL.
Authoring Institution: Child Trends, Inc., Washington, DC.