Friday, September 9, 2016

What Does it Mean to be in Poverty in the U.S., Statistically Speaking?

"You may have heard public officials or the media talk recently about the poverty rate in America. In advance of the U.S. Census Bureau’s release of its annual income and poverty reports next week, we thought it might be worth reviewing how poverty is officially defined and measured in the United States.
The official poverty measure for the United States was established in 1969 and is calculated based on data collected in the Annual Social and Economic Supplement to the Current Population Survey (CPS). The CPS is a household survey sponsored jointly by the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and has data dating back to 1965 on key socio-economic topics about the population.
Two factors are used to determine a family’s or individual’s poverty status: (1) their family or individual income and (2) their poverty threshold. If a family’s total income for the year is below its assigned poverty threshold, then that family — and every individual in it — is considered to be in poverty..."

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