Kids Count: Economy Hurting Michigan’s Youth

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LANSING (WWJ) – More Michigan children are living in poverty as families struggle with unemployment and home foreclosures.

The annual “Kids Count” report shows a 64-percent jump in child poverty over the past decade. Laura Speer, who helped compile the data, says these are troubling numbers.

“This is because children who grow up in households with incomes below the poverty level are more likely to experience a host of bad outcomes from physical and emotional health … to education … and the list goes on,” Speer said.

WWJ spoke also with Patrick McCarthy, CEO of the Annie E. Casey Foundation, which conducted the Kids Count Survey.

“These children face educational failure more frequently. They are less likely to complete high school, less likely to be working as adults, more likely to be involved in the criminal justice system, more likely to become involved in substance abuse,” McCarthy said.

The report also found more than a third of Michigan children under age 18 live in a household where no parent has full-time, year-round employment.

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