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    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a study this week which showed a higher firearm homicide rate in 2020 relative to 2019, and pointed to poverty as a factor in the increase. The CDC study showed that “the firearm homicide rate in 2020 was the highest recorded since 1994.” But it also showed that the increase in the firearm homicide rates varied across demographics. For example, among males the “largest increases in firearm homicide rates were among Black males aged 10–24 (from 54.9 per 100,000 people in 2019 to 77.3 in 2020) and 25–44 years (66.5 to 90.6).” Among females “the highest rates and largest increases were among those who were Black, aged 10–24 (6.4 to 9.1) and 25–44 years (6.9 to 10.2).” The CDC suggested a relationship between poverty and the rising firearm homicide rate, observing, “Rates of firearm homicide were lowest and increased least at the lowest poverty level and were higher and showed larger increases at higher poverty levels.” They also pointed out that “youth firearm homicide and suicide rates have been associated with poverty...
    A new study again confirms it: Republican-led states have higher murder rates than Democratic ones. While your Tucker Carlson-watching uncle may be utterly convinced that Portland, Oregon, has been burned to the ground, or regaling his email lists with any number of tales he heard directly from Donald Trump's inflamed appendix, the truth of the matter is that the states with high violent crime rates tend to be led by conservative Republican politicians. So then, which causes which? That's not clear, but the Yahoo! News writeup of the study provides a nice, terse summary of what we know does predict violent crime rates. They "are found in areas that have low average education levels, high rates of poverty and relatively modest access to government assistance," which not coincidentally describes much of the deep-conservative South. It may be that fear of violent crime makes Americans more conservative; certainly, anyone with a passing familiarity with Fox News knows that America's top conservative news source got that way with hosts that scream in bug-eyed terror over all the ways that you, personally, are in...
    People shop at a Walmart in Rosemead, California on November 22, 2021.Frederic J. Brown | AFP | Getty Images The coronavirus pandemic has led to a new era of inflation inequality, economists warn, in which poor households bear the brunt of rising prices.   That's because a bigger portion of their budget goes toward categories that have spiked in cost. Food is up 6.4% over the past year, for example, while gasoline jumped a whopping 58%. And now many people are facing those higher prices as federal stimulus programs fade away.   "They're essentially looking to stretch a dollar most days," said Chris Wimer, co-director of the Center on Poverty & Social Policy at Columbia University. "It's going to lead to difficult choices between putting gas in the car or paying for your kids' child care or putting food on the table."  A recent analysis by the Penn Wharton Budget Model found that low- and middle-income households spent about 7% more in 2021 for the same products they bought in 2020 or in 2019. That translates into about $3,500 for the average...
    The Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program has been updated for the first time in years, giving recipients 27% more than before the pandemic. The Biden administration on Monday announced the biggest increase in Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, commonly known as food stamps, in the program's history. The change is likely to benefit many LGBTQ people, who experience poverty at higher rates than non-LGBTQ people and have been particularly vulnerable during the pandemic. Beginning in October, the average monthly benefits SNAP recipients receive will be about 27% higher than prior to the pandemic. The news follows a spike in the number of people enrolled in the program, which rose 15% between February 2020 and April 2021. This increase in benefits is the result of the 2018 Farm Bill, which tasked the Agriculture Department with modernizing the plan by 2022, as well as Biden's executive order, signed a couple days into his presidency, that directed the federal government to provide economic relief to families during the pandemic and the department to...
    President Joe Biden's proposal to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour would cost jobs and raise the costs of good and services but would lift nearly one million out of poverty, a nonpartisan budget agency said in report released Monday. The wage hike would would cost 1.4 million jobs by 2025 and increase the deficit by $54 billion over ten years, the Congressional Budget Office said in its findings. In its cost assessment of Biden's 'Raise the Wage Act of 2021,' the non-partisan agency also said a minimum wage increase would lift 900,000 Americans out of poverty.  The findings will likely inflame the debate around the proposal instead of settle things. Democrats have argued the wage hike will lift people out of poverty. Republicans have countered it would cost jobs.   Both sides will find support for their argument in the CBO assessment. President Joe Biden's proposal to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour would cost jobs and raise the costs of good and services but would lift nearly one million out of poverty, the Congressional Budget...
    President-elect Joe Biden's proposal to more than double the federal minimum wage would provide an urgently pay hike to millions of low-income workers and help stem inequality in the U.S., economists and labor advocates said. In detailing his $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief proposal on Thursday, Mr. Biden called for raising the minimum wage to at least $15 an hour, saying, "No one working 40 hours a week should still be below the poverty line." A fatter paycheck could help many Americans regain their financial footing during the ongoing recovery, including "essential" workers such as grocery clerks and home health aides whose jobs have put them on the front lines of a pandemic yet whose earnings are among the lowest. "Every worker should be paid a $15 minimum wage, and essential front-line workers need hazard pay for the enormous health and safety risks they face during this pandemic," Marc Perrone, international president of the United Food and Commercial Workers, told CBS MoneyWatch in a statement. The union represents 1.3 million retail, grocery and other workers. Where minimum wage will go up...
    Coronavirus updates: Pence gets vaccinated; Moderna vaccine awaits FDA authorization; Southern California ICU capacity at 0% New York man trapped in car for 10 hours after being buried by snowplow Annual cost of living (family of 2): $50,069 (19th lowest) > Annual housing costs (family of 2): $7,797 (10th lowest) > Annual food costs (family of 2): $6,138 (25th lowest) > Median family income: $66,171 (6th lowest) > Families earning less than $10,000: 4.6% (6th highest)" data-record-deferred-loadtime="true" data-src="{"default":{"load":"wait","src":"//img-s-msn-com.akamaized.net/tenant/amp/entityid/BB1c2FRu.img?h=416&w=799&m=6&q=60&u=t&o=f&l=f"},"size3column":{"load":"wait","src":"//img-s-msn-com.akamaized.net/tenant/amp/entityid/BB1c2FRu.img?h=416&w=624&m=6&q=60&u=t&o=f&l=f"},"size2column":{"load":"wait","src":"//img-s-msn-com.akamaized.net/tenant/amp/entityid/BB1c2FRu.img?h=416&w=624&m=6&q=60&u=t&o=f&l=f"}}" role="presentation" src="//static-entertainment-neu-s-msn-com.akamaized.net/sc/9b/e151e5.gif" title="Alabama - SeanPavonePhoto / Getty Images" /> These $19k SUVs Will Make You Trade in Your Car Ad Microsoft This is a slam dunk if you want a one-card wallet in 2021 Ad Microsoft New Policy For Cars Used Less Than 49 Miles/Day Ad Microsoft ...
    The energy workers advocacy group Power the Future has released a compilation of the kind of energy landscape Democrats envision in America, including Democrat presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden. Daniel Turner, founder and executive director of Power the Future, told Breitbart News: Millions of men and women work in the energy industry, and when Vice President Biden threatens to end the fossil fuel industry, their jobs are on the line. We wanted to highlight who the real players in a Biden-Kamala Harris administration would be that would lead the bureaucracy to drive these energy workers in to unemployment. “It’s not enough to see the radical proposals of the Biden-Harris agenda. Voters deserve to see who will lead the effort to ruin the economy by turning our energy independence into energy poverty,” Turner said. Power the Future’s compilation includes some highlights from Democrat House and Senate “ad hoc climate change panels” reports — policies that Turner believes will be embraced by a Biden/Harris administration: Impose a carbon tax: Democrats support a carbon tax on fossil fuels, which would...
    Is this true? Millennials aren’t just the first generation set to do worse than our parents and our grandparents. If not for the (badly tattered) social safety net, we would be the most impoverished young adults since the Great Depression. — Jill Filipovic (@JillFilipovic) August 11, 2020 Pretty much, yes. This is for 30-year olds: This shouldn’t be surprising. Many Millennials faced the full force of the Great Recession in their early 30s, and that had a big effect on their income. At the same time, the system worked the way it was intended: they also received more government assistance than other generations during this time. When you put this together, their poverty rate was about the same as Gen X and lower than either boomers or boomer parents at the same age: My only real objection to Filipovic’s tweet is her description of the social safety net as “badly tattered.” In fact, it’s grown steadily since the 60s and is quite robust these days. Republicans seem to spend their entire careers fighting to tear...
    Black and Hispanic Americans are more likely to be infected with and die from the novel coronavirus, regardless of where they live, a new study suggests. Researchers found almost three times the number of cases and and deaths in wealthy minority neighborhoods compared to similar areas that have mostly white residents. This was true across 10 major US cities including New York City, Chicago and Los Angeles, according to New York University Grossman School of Medicine. What's more, when limited to low-income counties, the risk of infection and deaths for black and Hispanics from non-white neighborhoods was eight to nine times greater than those living in predominantly Caucasian towns.  Blacks and Hispanics in low-income and minority neighborhoods in the US  had eight times the infection risk of whites in low-income and mainly white towns. Pictured: A healthcare worker tends to a patient in the COVID-19 Unit at United Memorial Medical Center in Houston, Texas, July 2 'While we expected to see greater numbers of COVID-19 cases and deaths in predominantly non-white, low-income communities, we were surprised that this relationship...
    In major urban areas, COVID-19 has taken a heavier toll in counties with more people of color, and higher-poverty counties have the highest coronavirus infection rate, according to a new study. Yet racial and ethnic disparities tied to the novel coronavirus were persistent among both wealthier and poorer communities, according to the research published Tuesday in JAMA Network Open. The analysis included data through mid-May for 10 cities – Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York City, Philadelphia and Seattle – and their surrounding areas, for a total of 158 counties that were divided by poverty level and the size of their racial and ethnic minority populations. About half of all counties were considered "less-poverty" counties, with a median income of about $79,800; the median income in "more-poverty" counties was about $60,200. Coronavirus disparities were most striking when looking at death rates in poorer communities: Substantially white counties had a death rate of 3.3 per 100,000 residents, while heavily nonwhite counties had a death rate more than nine times higher, at 30.7.[ READ: Dental and Doctors’ Offices...
    There’s no question that the COVID-19 pandemic and the severe recession it spawned are widening California’s economic divide. California already had the nation’s highest rate of functional poverty before this year began, as calculated by the Census Bureau using cost-of-living as well as income data, with nearly 20% of the state’s 40 million people impoverished. The Public Policy Institute of California calculates that another fifth of Californians are in “near-poverty.” That was true even when California’s economy was booming, before COVID-19 and recession reared their ugly heads. Low-income, non-white Californians are more likely to be infected with the coronavirus, more likely to become unemployed, and more likely to become homeless as their incomes shrink. Therefore, it’s inescapably logical that pandemic is making the poor even poorer. However, the most important factor in California’s high, and apparently increasing, level of poverty is not income, but our very high cost-of-living, second only to Hawaii among the states. Everything — except, perhaps, seasonal produce — costs more than it does just about everywhere else. Housing is the most significant cost-of-living component. Whether buying or renting, putting a roof over...
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