Not in my backyard: Poverty

Photo Credit: Protesters outside the U.S. Capitol during a Poor People’s Campaign rally on June 23, 2018JOSE LUIS MAGANA / AP

Poverty in the United States has been an ongoing issue for years and now with the government’s shutdown, we intend to see it spike even higher. This post will not be one from a political stance but solely my research and opinions shared regarding a stance for society.With the shutdown, do you believe you are affected even if you do not work directly for the government? If you are wealthy or even rich, you may not feel as though you or your loved ones are directly impacted, but guess what? Everyone is.

Any time there is poverty present, the entire social community is brought under fire. When you have families who are no longer capable of providing food and housing to maintain, desperate measures will cause desperate people to do the unmentionable. 

According to Forbes.com, “The 10 Most Dangerous U.S. Cities” are:

1.      Detroit (Population: 713,239; Violent crime rate: 2,137 per 100,000 residents) this city’s crime majority stems from gang-related activity.

2.      St. Louis (Population: 320,454; Violent crime rate: 1,857 per 100,000 residents) this city’s crime majority stems from drug-trafficking activity.

3.      Oakland (Population: 395,317; Violent crime rate: 1,683 per 100,000 residents) this city’s crime majority stems from high levels of poverty and proximity to drug corridors.

4.      Memphis (Population: 652,725; Violent crime rate: 1,583 per 100,000 residents) this city’s crime majority stems from high criminal activity.

5.      Birmingham (Population: 213,258; Violent crime rate: 1,483 per 100,000 residents) this city’s crime majority stems from drug trade and high poverty level

6.      Atlanta (Population: 425,433; Violent crime rate: 1,433 per 100,000 residents) this city’s crime majority stems from drug trafficking

7.      Baltimore (Population: 626,848; Violent crime rate: 1,417 per 100,000 residents) this city’s crime majority stems from high levels of poverty and drug activity

8.      Stockton (Population: 295,136; Violent crime rate: 1,408 per 100,000 residents) this city’s crime majority stems from high levels of poverty

9.      Cleveland (Population: 397,106; Violent crime rate: 1,363 per 100,000 residents) this city’s crime majority stems from drug trafficking

10.  Buffalo (Population: 262,484; Violent crime rate: 1,283 per 100,000 residents) this city’s crime majority stems from poverty

Many of the listed cities alone share the common denominator–POVERTY. What happens when high levels of poverty are present? Families suffer because of inadequate income within the household and are not able to afford some bare essentials such as food, hygiene products, clothing and furniture. When you take children who live in low poverty level communities, you can see its effect within the school systems. There has been studies that show when a malnourished or hungry child attends school, there is a lack of concentration resulting in little to no focus on lessons that are taught.

The Share Our Strength Organization (www.ShareOurStrength.org) created a program titled “No Kid Hungry,” in which through this, they dedicate their effort and resources to ensure an ending to childhood hunger to make sure kids get the food they need.

Not only has SOS established that program, they have also created “Cooking Matters.” Cooking Matters helped parents and caregivers on limited food budgets learn how to shop and cook for their families with limited income.

So even if you live in the suburbs, this will not segregate you from experiencing the increase of crime, prices and dangers around you. With less employment, people will do whatever it takes to provide for their families including heinous crimes. With the rise of crime, the need for law enforcement will increase which may contribute to the amount of taxes we all pay. It is a revolving door and before we sit to cast stones, we might want to educate ourselves with what goes on around the community and what solutions we can contribute to make it better for all those in our backyard.

The Fire Jayde

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