September 13, 2022 / Basic Needs, Economics, Policy, Workforce

Unprecedented decline in child poverty rates attributed to government safety net programsImage

A new report from Child Trends (also covered in the New York Times) evaluates the biggest factors contributing to the unprecedented 30-year trend of decreasing child poverty. Key findings point to governmental safety net programs as key drivers.

Further, the US Census Bureau released pandemic-era child poverty estimates (through 2021) this week, saying “the new data show the significant impact the expansion of anti-poverty programs during the COVID-19 pandemic had on reducing child poverty.”

Additional recent studies, including from our partners at DataHaven in Connecticut found that food scarcity and child poverty rose after safety net programs ended.

What does that mean for social sector leaders?

First, the scale of government interventions offer opportunities to have the greatest impact. But blanket policies will always leave some households falling through cracks: immigrants, mixed-status and undocumented households, families that are newly navigating human services, digitally disconnected, underemployed, housing burdened, and others. Our role then, is (1) advocate for expanded policies and educate officials of the impact; and (2) find and directly serve the families that are left behind.

Second, the new philanthropic role of counties and cities distributing ARPA funds offers an opportunity, and maybe a model, to (1) build relationships with elected officials and (2) provide guidance in funding and programming decisions that have systemic impacts.

August 7, 2022 / Early Childhood, Economics, Equity

Childhood friendships across economic classes key to upward mobilityImage

In new research from Raj Chetty’s team at Opportunity Insights (published in two parts in Nature and summarized in NYT), a massive analysis of economic and social networks found that exposure to and friendships among people of different social classes is one of the strongest predictors of upward mobility.

The study found that lower socio-economic groups make connections in their home neighborhood and at religious institutions, while higher SES groups tend to make their bridging connections in college. This research builds on their prior economic mobility analysis and development of the Opportunity Atlas.

So what do we do with this information?

Programs, services, policies, and investments that facilitate interactions across diverse economic groups will likely have lasting impacts. Policy level solutions might include inclusive housing and planning decisions. At a more local level, effort might be made to reduce in-school student segregation. Programmatically, even experiential programs outside of participants’ own neighborhood may have an impact.

February 9, 2021 / Basic Needs, Economics, Equity, Hispanic

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The racial gap in liquid assets makes Black and Hispanic families more vulnerable to income fluctuations. When faced with a job loss, Black and Hispanic families have to cut spending more dramatically than White families. Upon the arrival of a tax refund or other stimulus, Black and Hispanic families have to spend it more quickly. Listen to the MAX Workforce Solutions presentation or read the full report (JPMorgan Chase Institute)

January 13, 2021 / Economics, Equity, Hispanic, Workforce

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In a new fact sheet from the National Women’s Law Center, we’ve learned that:

  • Women represented 111% of the 140,000 net jobs lost in December (men gained 16,000)
  • More than 2 in 5 of the 12.1 million women’s jobs lost between February and April have not yet returned
  • The overall unemployment rate among women (6.3%) masks even higher rates for Black women (8.4%), Latinas (9.1%), 20- to 24-year-olds (9.3%), and women with disabilities (11.4%)
August 27, 2020 / Economics, Equity, Workforce

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62% of Black-owned businesses are not prepared to go more than 3-4 weeks without revenue. 96% of Black-owned businesses are sole proprietorships with either 1099 contractors or no other staff, limiting the available support they qualify for. [webinar] (Atlanta Wealth Building Initiative)

August 22, 2020 / Basic Needs, Economics, Equity, Workforce

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“The rapid adoption of remote work and automation could accelerate inequalities in place for decades. Economists say the resulting ‘K’ shaped recovery will be good for professionals—and bad for everyone else.” [article] (Wall Street Journal)

June 9, 2020 / Economics, Hispanic, Workforce

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41% of Black-owned business closed between February and April. 32% of Latinx- and 36% of immigrant-owned businesses also shuttered. (Axios)

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