Saturday, January 27, 2007

Childhood poverty comes
at great cost to U.S. economy

Walker Evans' photographs from the ground-breaking book Let Us Now Praise Famous Men have no captions. Evans believed his photographs were self-explanatory; the presence of words implied that the image was somehow deficient. The photos document his journey through the rural South during the Great Depression. The title is from a passage in Ecclesiasticus that begins, "Let us now praise famous men, and our fathers that begat us."

Children who grow up poor cost the economy $500 billion a year because they are less productive, earn less money, commit more crimes and have more health-related expenses, says new study, The Economic Costs of Poverty.

β€œThe high cost of childhood poverty to the U.S. suggests that investing significant resources in poverty reduction might be more cost effective than we thought,” said Harry J. Holzer, an economist at Georgetown University and the Urban Institute and one of the four authors of the report.

Read the study here. Read The New York Times story here.


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