We received this link from our friend Bridget Kennedy of the Middlesex Continuum of Care.
Although this is something we have known for years, it is still very chilling to see the numbers in such a dramatic format.
The report was prepared by Legal Services of New Jersey’s Poverty Research Institute. They developed the Poverty Benchmarks Project which is a new on-going data collection effort that aims to increase understanding of poverty in New Jersey as a foundation for more effective public response to the reality of poverty and its consequences.Â This report is the inaugural report in this project and offers the highlights of a multi-dimensional review of the data related to poverty in New Jersey.Â It looks at five primary areas including what is meant by the term poverty and how it is measured; the stateâ€™s growing income inequality; the characteristics of populations in poverty; places in the state with high rates of poverty; and the impacts of poverty including health care, housing, education, transportation and the need for a safety net.
The majority of poor households in New Jersey are headed by someone who works, do not receive government assistance and would need about $8,000 more annual income just to reach the official poverty line.
These are some of the major findings in “Poor in the Garden State: Beginning to Assess New Jersey’s Progress in Addressing Poverty,” a report released Sunday by the Legal Services of New Jersey Poverty Research Institute.
The report â€” using figures available for 2005, the most recent year for which data is complete â€” is intended to be a benchmark study of poverty in one of the wealthiest states in the nation and be updated annually by the institute.
“Our findings support the conclusion that experiencing poverty means facing the daily reality of income that does not cover the cost of basic needs like rent, health care, child care, and food,”
said Serena Rice, managing director of the Poverty Research Institute.
“In a high-cost state like New Jersey, a single parent with two young children must earn more than $44,300 a year to have enough income to cover expenses. By this measure, more than 1.8 million people in New Jersey faced true poverty in 2005,” according to Rice.