Monday, December 7, 2015


A bipartisan group of poverty experts says that changes in the US economy and family structure over the past 40 years necessitates new approaches to reducing poverty. Family, education, and work are now so closely linked that they must be studied and improved together if poverty is to be reduced. They cite the growing gap in educational achievement between poor kids and rich kids; the increase in single-parent families; the decline of work among men, especially young black men; unstable work and work hours; stagnating wages; and high rates of incarceration as the principal causes of poverty today. To address these challenges, the experts from organizations as disparate as the American Enterprise Institute and the Annie E. Casey Foundation recommend:

  1. Promoting a new cultural norm surrounding parenthood and marriage.
  2. Promoting delayed, responsible childbearing.
  3. Increasing access to effective parenting education.
  4. Helping less-educated young men and women prosper in work and family.
5.  Improving skills to get well-paying jobs.
6.  Making work pay more for less educated people.
7.  Raising work levels among hard-to-employ people, including the poorly       educated and those with criminal records.
8.  Ensuring that jobs are available.
9.  Increasing public investment in preschool and postsecondary education.
10. Educating the whole child to promote social-emotional and character           development as well as academic skills.
11. Modernizing the organization and accountability of education.
12. Closing resource gaps to reduce education gaps.

Source: American Enterprise Institute, 12/3/15, Reducing Poverty