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poverty, health, racial inequality, children




Though the United States is one of the highest-income countries in the world, there are still hundreds of thousands of citizens living below the poverty line. More children live below the poverty line than any other age group. The racial demographic and distribution of modern-day poverty can be traced back, in part, to policies such as gentrification and redlining. School system failures and a lack of access to social capital also contribute to the prevalence of intergenerational poverty. The consequences of intergenerational poverty include food insecurity, birth and developmental issues, unsafe living conditions, and increased risk of violence, incarceration, and victimization. Every consequence of growing up in poverty acts as another barrier for someone to rise above the poverty line. Programs that focus on developing connections, social skills, and a mentor relationship with a trusted adult can enable youth to overcome such barriers.