Category: Vulnerable Families Research Program

Resource Category Topic Type
New England Has the Highest Increase in Income Disparity in the Nation
Income inequality in New England is rising at the highest rate in the nation, this brief finds. Between 1989 and 2004, the region experienced the largest increase in income inequality in the country, due to both growth among top earners and the hollowing out of the middle class caused by significant changes in the nation's economy.
New Hampshire, Vulnerable Families Research Program Income, Inequality, New England Publication
New Immigrant Settlements in Rural America: Problems, Prospects, and Policies
Regions of rural America are being reshaped by growing numbers of immigrants who are choosing small-town life over the bright lights of the big city. This study found that immigrant settlers may have a big impact on small, rural communities—sometimes straining resources but also offering promise for reinvigorating dying communities.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Community, Economic Development, Immigration, Rural Publication
New, Longer Road to Adulthood: Schooling, Work, and Idleness among Rural Youth, The
This report focuses on the education and work experiences of rural youth during the emerging adult years (age 20 to 24), as they make the transition from adolescence to adulthood. It documents how rural emerging adults combine work and school and experience idleness, closely examines their educational attainment, and compares their experiences with those in central city and suburban areas.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Education, Employment, Rural, Urban, Young Adults Publication
No Place Like Home: Place and Community Identity Among North Country Youth
This brief explores the link between rural youths’ identification with their community, their self-esteem, and their future plans. The panel study of New Hampshire’s Coos County youth offers a snapshot into the dynamics of a population that is developing its identity in a region that is undergoing an identity transformation of its own. Place identity may be influential in how individuals think of themselves and their futures, particularly for youth in the process of forming an identity. The study reveals the importance of developing community programs and activities for youth that create social ties to form a positive identification with the place they live and consequently improve their self-esteem and the likelihood for staying or returning to their communities in later adulthood.
New Hampshire, Vulnerable Families Research Program Community, Coös Youth Study, New Hampshire, Rural, Young Adults Publication
Official Poverty Statistics Mask the Economic Vulnerability of Seniors
In this brief, we compare Maine, one of the oldest states in the nation, to the United States as a whole. Historically, both children and the elderly were regarded as vulnerable groups in need of support from government programs. Traditional poverty estimates suggest that at least since the late 1960s, senior poverty has been on the decline, whereas poverty among children has increased. Declines among seniors are largely attributable to the advent of programs such as Social Security. Similar to the nation, about half of Maine seniors (51.0 percent) would be poor without Social Security benefits. However, traditional poverty measurement masks the role rising medical costs play in pushing seniors into poverty. The newer Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM), which accounts for these costs, reveals that more than one in ten Maine seniors over age 55 were living below the poverty line in 2009–2013. This is 2.3 percentage points higher than official estimates suggest. Without medical expenses, the SPM indicates that poverty among Maine seniors would be roughly cut in half, from 10.2 percent to 5.2 percent. A similar reduction is evident across the United States (from 14.2 percent to 9.0 percent), though this represents a smaller relative reduction in poverty (by just over one-third).
Vulnerable Families Research Program Health, Poverty, Seniors Publication
Older Americans Working More, Retiring Less
This Carsey brief finds that the percentage of Americans age 65 and older remaining in the labor force continues to grow steadily in urban, suburban, and rural areas. In 2009, 22 percent of older men and 13 percent of older women were still working compared to 17 percent of men and 9 percent of women in 1995. Moreover, increasing percentages of older workers hold full-time, full-year jobs.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Employment, Seniors Publication
One Million Additional Children in Poverty Since 2009: 2010 Data Reveal Nearly One in Four Southern Children Now Live in Poverty
American Community Survey (ACS) data released on September 22, 2011 allow for a detailed look at child poverty by state and place, adding to the understanding of the economic landscape described by the Current Population Survey (CPS) data released last week. While the CPS data are useful for providing a snapshot of poverty across the nation, the larger sample size of the ACS--three million addresses versus 100,000 addresses in the CPS--makes it better suited for nuanced analyses of poverty. In this brief, the authors use the ACS data released on September 22 to focus on child poverty. The authors report that between 2009 and 2010 an additional one million children joined the ranks of those in poverty. This brings the total to an estimated 15.7 million poor children in 2010, an increase of 2.6 million since the Great Recession began in 2007. Of the 15.7 million poor children in 2010, 5.9 million are young (under age 6), an increase of 220,000 over one year. Across the United States, rural, suburban, and central city areas all realized significant increases in child poverty between 2009 and 2010 and since the recent recession began in 2007. Congressional concerns over the federal debt have already resulted in an agreement that will force significant cuts to domestic spending, including many programs that serve children and families. The authors stress that, although budget cuts are unavoidable, policy makers should carefully consider how cuts are distributed, keeping America's most vulnerable families in mind as the effects of the recession reverberate, as demonstrated by high child poverty rates.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Children, Poverty, Safety Net Publication
Out-of-Home Care by State and Place: Higher Placement Rates for Children in Some Remote Rural Places
This fact sheet examines out-of-home placement rates for children removed from their homes because of abuse or neglect. The data finds that children in remote rural areas have overall higher rates of out-of-home placements. It also provides data on placement rates by rural or urban status to help inform policy makers as they discuss the child welfare system.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Children, Family, Health, Rural Publication
Over 3 Million Low-Income Children in Rural Areas Face Cut in Child Tax Credit if Recovery Act Improvement Expires
According to this new research, at the end of 2010, the Child Tax Credit improvements that were included in the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will expire if Congress does not extend them. If this happens, low-income working families across America will be affected.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Children, Poverty, Rural, Safety Net, Tax Publication
Over 80 Percent of New Hampshire Residents Support Paid Family and Medical Leave Insurance
Paid family and medical leave helps workers manage their work and family responsibilities by allowing them to take extended time away from work while receiving some wage replacement and without the threat of being fired. Yet, access to paid family and medical leave to care for a sick family member, a new child, or tend to one’s own illness is uneven: workers who typically have access are more likely to be full time, have higher education and earnings, and work in larger firms than workers with no access. Support for a statewide paid family leave program is widespread in New Hampshire. In a winter 2016 Granite State Poll, 82 percent of New Hampshire residents said they support a paid family and medical leave insurance program. Although New Hampshire currently does not have a paid family and medical leave law or program, these policies are gaining momentum across the United States. California, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and New York have enacted family and medical leave legislation (the New York law takes effect in January 2018), and many other states are considering similar legislation. At the federal level, the Family and Medical Insurance Leave Act (the FAMILY Act) would create a national paid family and medical leave insurance program to provide workers with time to care for family members, a new child, or themselves when seriously ill. Understanding the level and nature of support for a program in New Hampshire will provide policy makers and stakeholders with useful information when considering the needs of Granite State workers and the opportunities for maintaining a strong workforce.
New Hampshire, Vulnerable Families Research Program Family, Health, Health Insurance, New Hampshire Publication
Over Sixteen Million Children in Poverty in 2011
UPDATE: This brief has been updated to include revised versions of Figure 1 (page 2) and Appendix 1 (page 6). The original version of this brief overestimated the statistical significance of some state-level changes in child poverty between 2010 and 2011, and has been revised accordingly.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Children, Poverty Publication
Overall Declines in Child Poverty Mask Relatively Stable Rates Across States
Earlier this week, the U.S. Census Bureau published its official poverty estimates noting a decline in poverty across the population.1 In this brief, we use additional Census data released today from the American Community Survey (ACS), the only regular source for estimating yearly child poverty rates at, and below, the state level. We examine child poverty rates across the United States by place type, region, and state (see Box 1). Child poverty decreased across the United States from 21.7 percent in 2014 to 20.7 percent in 2015 (see Table 1). Nationwide child poverty rates are still higher, however, than they were in 2009, at the end of the Great Recession. Child poverty has declined to 2009 levels in rural areas only, and remains above pre-recession levels in all place types (analyses not shown). Child poverty declined across all place types over the past year, as shown in Table 1. It remains lowest in suburbs and highest in cities, though rural areas are not far behind. Regionally, child poverty rates were highest in the South and lowest in the Northeast; yet, Northeastern cities have higher child poverty than cities in any other region. Child poverty fell in thirteen states and only rose in Mississippi—the only state with a child poverty rate over 30 percent. New Hampshire child poverty remains among the lowest nationwide at 10.7 percent, a significant decline from last year. See Figure 1. While these child poverty declines are promising and corroborated by results from the official poverty statistics published earlier this week, it is important to keep in mind that most states experienced no change between 2014 and 2015. Lower child poverty rates appear to be driven by higher median incomes over the past year.2
Vulnerable Families Research Program Children, Poverty Publication
Paid Family and Medical Leave in New Hampshire
Life events such as an illness, the birth of a child, or a parent’s need for care require workers to take extended time away from their jobs. The aging of the New Hampshire population and the rise of women in the labor force mean that more workers in the state are likely to need extended time away from work to provide family care. But taking the leave often means loss of pay or even loss of a job. Access to paid family and medical leave is uneven in New Hampshire. Neither the federal government nor New Hampshire have a paid family and medical leave law or program, thus access to leave depends on whether it is included as a benefit offered by one’s employer. The 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows certain workers to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid—but job-protected—leave to tend to a serious health condition or to care for a new child or a seriously ill relative within a 12-month period. To be eligible for FMLA, employees must work for an employer with 50 or more workers within a 75-mile radius and have worked 1,250 hours for the same employer over the previous year.1 Nationally, about 41 percent of employees are not covered by FMLA. In New Hampshire, 10 percent of firms employing fewer than 10 employees provided paid family care leave in 2011; among businesses employing 250 or more employees, 30 percent provided paid family care leave.2 Many men face stigma for taking leave, as cultural and workplace attitudes typically view men as breadwinners and women as caregivers.3 Indeed, in New Hampshire, women are more likely to take family and medical leave (paid or unpaid), yet they are less likely to have access to the benefit, according to 2016 Granite State Poll data. Furthermore, workers with the lowest family income lack access to paid leave. The current system, reliant on employer-provided paid leave and unpaid FMLA, is fragmented and unequal, with some workers having access to generous paid leave benefits and others either cobbling together paid and unpaid leave, leaving the labor force, or not providing the needed family care.
New Hampshire, Vulnerable Families Research Program Employment, New Hampshire, Public Opinion Publication
Paid Sick Time Helps Workers Balance Work and Family
In New Hampshire, workers fare better than workers nationally, yet one-quarter of Granite State workers do not have paid sick days. The lack of paid sick days places workers in a bind. They are forced to choose between caring for a sick family member or themselves and losing pay. This brief suggests that the long-term benefits of workers having paid sick days out way the cost for employers because it promotes less contagion among coworkers, increased productivity, and reduced turnover.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Community, Employment, New Hampshire, Safety Net Publication
Parental Substance Use in New Hampshire
Hidden in the shadows of New Hampshire’s opioid epidemic are the children who live with their parents’ addiction every day. They fall behind in school as the trouble at home starts to dominate their lives, they make the 911 calls, they are shuttled about to live with relatives or in foster care, and they face an uncertain future when their parents can no longer care for them.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Child Care, Drugs, Rural, Substance Abuse, Urban Publication
Place Matters Challenges and Opportunities in Four Rural Americas
A survey of 7,800 rural Americans in 19 counties across the country has led to the Carsey Institute's first major publication that outlines four distinctly different rural Americas—amenity, decline, chronic poverty, and those communities in decline that are also amenity-rich—each has unique challenges in this modern era that will require different policies than their rural neighbors.
Demography, Vulnerable Families Research Program Demography, Environment, Housing, Public Opinion, Race Publication
Proposed EITC Expansion Would Increase Eligibility and Dollars for Rural and Urban “Childless” Workers
This brief uses data from the 2013 Annual Social and Economic Supplement to the Current Population Survey to examine how President Obama’s proposed expanded eligibility and higher credit values might affect tax filers in both rural and urban America.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Children, Employment, Rural, Safety Net, Tax, Urban Publication
Psychotropic Medication Use Among Children in the Child Welfare System
Prior research demonstrates that children in the child welfare system are given psychotropic medication at rates approximately three times higher than children and adolescents in the general population.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Children, Health Publication
Public Insurance Drove Overall Coverage Growth Among Children in 2012
Using data from the American Community Survey, this brief examines the rates of health insurance coverage among children under 18 in the United States by region and by rural, suburban, and central city residence between 2008 and 2012.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Children, Health Insurance Publication
Race, Class, and Community in a Southern Forest-Dependent Region
Based on a Community and Environment in Rural America survey, this brief looks at four counties in Alabama. It finds blacks and whites have different outcomes in the community, despite expectations of regional stability and greater equality. Though they reported similar rates of social mobility, African Americans in the "Black Belt" of Alabama are disproportionately poorer and employed in lower-skill jobs than whites.
Vulnerable Families Research Program African Americans, Community, Public Opinion, Race, Rural Publication