Census report on poverty rate shows stimulus worked, Sheldon Danziger says

September 12, 2012

National Poverty Center director Sheldon Danziger had an optimistic view of the U.S. Census Bureau's report on the poverty rate, which remained at an all-time high but did not increase as many anticipated.

"This is good news and a surprise," Danziger told the Associated Press, citing private-sector job gains and extended unemployment benefits passed in 2009. "It would indicate the stimulus was even more effective than believed."

The AP report was published by the Columbia (Mo.) Daily Tribune, Fox News Latino, The Maui News, and The (N.J.) Daily Record, amongst others.

In other media coverage of the Census report, Danziger told the Los Angeles Times that the increase in low-paying jobs has elevated some people out of poverty but also weakened the earnings of displaced middle-class workers. "It's the middle that seems to be struggling more than the poor," he said.

Danziger added the report is a reminder that not all Americans are recovering equally from the Great Recession. "It's the only time we as a nation focus on the poor," Danziger told America Public Media Marketplace.

In fact, as 2009 stimulus funding provided to state and local governments becomes exhausted, many public-sector employees are being laid off to offset the diminished revenue, Danziger told SFGate.com.