The Economist cites $2.00 a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America, in the story “Poverty in America: No money no love,” which calls on today’s Presidential candidates to address endemic poverty.
$2.00 a Day, a recently released book by Luke Shaefer (University of Michigan) and Kathryn Edin (Johns Hopkins), documents the rise of extreme domestic poverty in the wake of America’s 1996 welfare reforms.
The Economist explores the legacy of America’s 1996 welfare reforms, offering that while those reforms still look “broadly positive,” shortcomings have come to light, particularly in “the tougher economic conditions of the past decade."
“Almost 15% of Americans are poor, including one in five children, and almost one in three households headed by a woman,” write the authors. “That represents a level of deprivation, which rises and falls with the economy but has never dipped into single figures, higher than that of almost any other developed country.”
“Instead of quibbling over the past,” they write, “it would be better to ponder what America should do to cut poverty.”
H. Luke Shaefer is an associate professor of social work and public policy. His research focuses on the effectiveness of the United States social safety net in serving low-wage workers and economically disadvantaged families. His recent work explores rising levels of extreme poverty in the United States.