EXCERPT: In the United States today, the wealthiest country in the history of the world, 47 million Americans are living in poverty.
Almost 22 percent of American children are poor and we have the highest childhood poverty rate of any major country on earth.
Let’s be clear. Living in poverty doesn’t just mean you don’t have enough money to buy a big screen TV, a fancy laptop computer, or the latest version of the iPhone.
It goes much, much deeper than that. In America today, being poor not only means you are less likely to have a grocery store in your community selling healthy food, far too often it means you don’t know where your next meal is going to come from. In fact, 15 million children in America today are living in families that struggle to put enough food on the table.
Living in poverty means you are less likely to have access to a doctor, a dentist, or a mental health care provider. And if you are lucky enough to see a doctor it means you are less likely to afford the prescription drugs a doctor prescribes to you. In fact, one out of five Americans between the ages of 18-64 cannot afford to fill their prescription medication at a drug store.
Living in poverty means you are less likely to have access to public transportation — which makes it harder to find a job.
It means you are less likely to have access to child care. And you are more likely to do drugs and engage in self-destructive activities....
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