Kids Count Report Revealed
FOX 47 News
More Michigan kids are living in poverty, according to the latest "Kids Count" report that was just released. According to the report, more than a half-million children across the state lived in poverty in 2011. Poverty is defined as an income of $18,000 a year or less for a family of three.
Child poverty went up 28%. The number of children qualifying for food assistance also jumped by 55%.
Experts say that parents are bringing in less income, while at the same time social programs to help those who are struggling have been cut or reduced. When looking at the well-being of children across the state, the report finds Michigan is lagging.
Ingham County ranked 41st out of 82 state counties for well-being. Child poverty increased 15%. 22% of children qualified for food aid compared to the statewide increase of 55% childhood abuse and neglect linked to poverty is higher in Ingham County. It increased by 92% compared to the statewide increase of 28%.
Jackson County ranks even lower than Ingham County - 58th for overall child well being. Child poverty in Jackson County is up to 54%, compared to the state's jump of 58%. The number of children qualifying for food aid in this county increased 46%. The number of victims of abuse and neglect linked to poverty is lower in Jackson than Ingham County. It increased by 6% compared to Ingham County's 92%.
There was a big drop in the number of kids in foster care in Michigan. In 2011, there were 11,000, compared to 17,000 in 2005. The state's infant mortality rate also dropped by eight percent.