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New York City poverty rate rises as national rate falls
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13:07, August 29, 2007

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Results released from the U.S. Census Bureau on Tuesday showed New York City's poverty rate rose in 2006 while the national rate took a dip.

The New York City Coalition Against Hunger says in 2006, almost 1,550,000 people were living in poverty, about 30,000 more than the number in 2005. That means one in five city residents live below the federal poverty line.

Nationwide, the percentage of Americans living below the poverty line slipped to 12.3 percent in 2006, or about 36.5 million people, from 12.6 percent, or 37 million, the year before.

The Census Bureau reported that median household income rose 0.7 percent to 48,200 dollars a year, adjusted for inflation, but more people had to be at work in each household.

The rise in household income and decline in poverty are positive developments, but the gap between high-income and low-income households has grown over the years.

The top 20 percent of households (those with incomes over 97,000 dollars a year) took home 50.5 percent of all income, while the bottom 20 percent (those making less than 20,000 dollars a year) took home 3.4 percent.

When it comes to health insurance, the number of Americans without health insurance rose by 2.2 million to 47 million people.

Plans for healthcare reform are being addressed by most of the 2008 presidential candidates.

Source: Xinhua

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