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SOC 302 (125)

Social Class and Families

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SOC 302
Kelly Fulton

Social Class and Families Tuesday, November 27, 2012 8:35 AM The Poverty Line • Created by Molly Orshansky. She herself had grown up poor. Became an economist and embraced task of coming up with poverty line. o How she did it: • She looked at US Department of Agricultural food plans to see how many servings of meats and vegetables were needed to stay alive. • She also had info on how much Americans would spend on food. • 3x minimally "adequate food intake" o Poverty Threshold • 2011: poverty threshold = 22,891 for a family of four • 2012: poverty threshold = 23,050 for a family of four • Childhood poverty dropped in 60s, leveled during the 70s, increases in the 80s and 90s Making Ends Meet • Edin and Lein: did research on welfare reliant/low wage moms. Got detailed records of household records and spending's. They wanted to find out: o Is welfare too generous o How are these women doing with welfare? • Neither group could make it on welfare or low wage. They found that it was the women working a low wage job who were doing worse. Reason was: o They were trying to get away from getting welfare so less welfare was given o They had more expenses like childcare, transportation o Were economically worse off o Were also emotionally worse off because they were worried a lot about the safety of their children and were constantly stressed • (PRWORA) Personal Responsibility Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act: Welfare Reform: To get people away from welfare and working. Contours of Child Poverty (Litcher) • For the US, "the issue is less of absolute material deprivation, and more if poverty or deprivation is morally defensible in an affluent society." o US had lower money transfers o US has less governmental transfers to children. • Children in the US are the poorest segment of society o Gap has
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