For Immediate Release
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167
* Gender Poverty Gap * 50 Million Uninsured
WASHINGTON - Census Bureau numbers released yesterday found that nearly one in six Americans are in poverty. The following are available to further analyze other findings:
ELIZABETH GRAYER, TIMOTHY CASEY, tcasey at legalmomentum.org
Grayer is president of Legal Momentum, Casey is senior staff attorney with the group, which just released the memo “Reading Between the Lines: Women’s Poverty in United States, 2010,” which notes among many other findings: “The 40.7 percent poverty rate for solo mother families was 68 percent greater than the 24.2 percent rate for solo father families.” The Census report states: “For related children under age six in families with a female householder, 58.2 percent were in poverty, about four times the rate of their counterparts in married-couple [households].”
Grayer said today: “The Census data highlight the serious hardship facing many American families in the current economic crisis. The data indicate increased poverty and a continuing gender poverty gap in the United States — facts that underscore the need for a social safety net that is accessible and adequate. Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, the national welfare program for families with children, is neither. TANF’s sub-poverty benefit levels ensure continued hardship for poor families. Barriers prevent eligible families from accessing benefits and TANF work rules prevent parents from participating in education and training programs that offer a permanent escape from welfare and poverty. The ever-increasing plague of poverty in America warrants an equally strong response. Even in the press of the appropriations cycle, and the convening of the Deficit Commission, Congress and the Administration should not delay making sorely needed improvements to the TANF program.” See: “The TANF Program: A Social Safety Net for Women and Families”
GARRET ADAMS, kyhealthcare at aol.com;
STEFFIE WOODHANDLER, swoolhandler at challiance.org;
MARK ALMBERG, mark at pnhp.org
Dr. Adams is the president for Physician for a National Health Program, Almberg is communications director for the group, which just released a statement “Number of uninsured climbs to highest figure since passage of Medicare, Medicaid.”
The group states: “Official estimates by the Census Bureau showing an increase of about 1 million in the number of Americans without health insurance in 2010 — to a 35-year high of 49.9 million persons, or 16.3 percent of the population, under the bureau’s revised calculation method — underscore the urgency of going beyond the Obama administration’s federal health law and swiftly implementing a single-payer, improved Medicare-for-all program.”
“In Massachusetts, whose 2006 health reform is widely viewed as the model for the federal health law, 370,000 people remained uninsured in 2010, representing 5.6 percent of the population, a jump from 4.3 percent who were uninsured in 2009.”
Dr. Adams said: “Tragically, we know that the new figures of uninsured mean a preventable annual death toll of about 50,000 people — that’s about one death every 10 minutes.”
Dr. Woolhandler, professor at the City University of New York School of Public Health and visiting professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, noted that the Census Bureau was once again silent on the pervasive problem of “underinsurance.”
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