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Child Poverty and Public Policy: Toward a Comprehensive Antipoverty Agenda

Publication Abstract

Danziger, Sandra K., and Sheldon H. Danziger. 1993. "Child Poverty and Public Policy: Toward a Comprehensive Antipoverty Agenda." Daedalus, 122(1): 57-84.

Using a variety of data sources including decennial censuses and Current Population Surveys, this article describes recent economic trends among families in general and poor families in particular. The authors analyze the proximate causes of child poverty and the extent to which it can be attributed to economic changes, changes in living arrangements, and changes in public welfare programs. Using this analysis, they present a model of the consequences of poverty and of the processes through which poverty affects the life chances of children. They conclude by outlining the components of a comprehensive antipoverty agenda designed to reduce the chances of becoming poor, to reduce the negative impacts of poverty on the physical, emotional, social, and cognitive health of children and adolescents, and to expand the opportunities available in poor communities. Their findings strongly indicate that a more comprehensive antipoverty strategy is needed if we are to reduce child poverty and its negative impacts on children.

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