Free Essay

Generational Poverty

In: Social Issues

Submitted By dweeks
Words 1771
Pages 8
The most important factor in overcoming generational poverty is changing the stigma associated with it. Many people assume that if someone is experiencing poverty it is because they are not working hard enough and are lazy. This could not be further from the truth because if you look at the statistics, the majority of those suffering from generational poverty are some of the most hard working people ever and that is because that is often all they know, the only thing they know how to do to survive. The thing about poverty is that it is not something one desires and specifically with generational poverty, it is much more difficult to overcome then people think and is more associated with the society we live in then with the actual person or family experiencing it. The main reason it is so difficult to overcome generational poverty is because the education in these impoverished communities is significantly lacking. If you look at the distribution of finances in this country it is clear as day that the money is distributed to the wealthy communities first because they are the ones that contribute to the economy of a certain area the most and in order to make those communities desirable, they need to have good schools, jobs, etc. Often it is not the teachers that are the problem in these schools, it is the limited resources they have to work with and if a community doesn’t value the education of the youth, the youth are not going to value education, which leads to the increase in dropout rates in impoverished communities. These rates go up significantly when a child is from a single-parent home as the children often feel as though they need to pull their weight within these homes and when this lifestyle is generational the family lacks the understanding of the importance of education, which can add to the pressures of needing to make money rather than going to school. Impoverished communities are also prime targets for drug sales as when faced with the stress of intergenerational poverty these individuals often turn to drugs as a way to cope. And within the communities, if you see your family struggle financially and see the drug distributors flashing expensive cars and jewelry, one is more likely to become involved in illegal activity. The issue of illegal activity only increases when you continue to take into account single-parent households because often single-parent needs to work multiple jobs, not neccesarily to make ends meat, but just to put food on the table. When a single-parent is working multiple jobs, that means that their child or children is left unattended because their ability to pay for childcare is not there. When a child is left unattended they are going to be exposed to more possible dangerous activities because generally these are the ones those involved in illegal activity target to increase their “employees.” I was raised by my father who was on disability for most of my life, so he was usually around, but I remember being young and we would always go to the friend’s house where his or her parent or parents were not there because they were working and that is where we would all get into trouble, not significant trouble, but we were also growing up in rural Vermont. Vermont was pretty idealistic back then, but over the past several years has gotten more and more risky. I would drive home from work and see lots of young children walking the streets with people I knew they should not be associating with. Recently there was a shooting in the town I worked in and two of the people involved in it were teenagers. They were also children that were involved in the system, mostly because of generational poverty and little supervision. I had worked with one in the group home I used to work in and his mother cared for him, but was unable to provide him with the level of supervision he needed and he, who had watched his mother struggle financially for his whole life, saw an opportunity to make money by becoming involved with big time drug dealers that came from the city and the coaxed him into stealing a family members gun and being involved in the shooting. Not only did he want to make money he also wanted to feel like he belonged and these people targeted him because of it. It is also common for those experiencing intergenerational poverty to have limited access to services, which makes it difficult to receive the financial, medical, and mental services one might need to improve their quality of life. In bigger cities there tends to be more access to public transportation, but at the same time their access to quality care is limited. I recently moved from Vermont to Arizona and have worked with many clients in Vermont that come from generational poverty, but the difference between the area I lived in Vermont and the area I live in Arizona, the impoverished communities in Vermont are much more isolated because Vermont is a relatively isolated state to begin with. Most families experiencing this level of poverty did not have their own cars and there was limited access to public transportation and without that one remains isolated and without the care they need. I have noticed since moving to the area I live in Arizona, that public transportation is more accessible, but that these communities still remain relatively isolated and lack the ability to access the quality of care one could access in wealthier communities. In regards to mental health, the facilities set up to treat these clients lack the means to help them in the degree in which they need. I recently when for a job interview in Arizona and waited in the main waiting area for the agency. The waiting area was filled with clients awaiting bus passes so they could get where they needed to go and they were told there was a lack of available bus passes for the majority of the clients and the clients became very upset and for good reason. Though the providers were not at fault how could one not become upset when their ability to access what they need is not there and within a culture who has felt devalued for most likely their entire lives, the anger they feel is well warranted. The majority of the clients in the waiting room were also homeless and uneducated and because of this are unlikely to find employment, especially within a community that gainful employment is limited or at times non-existent. Minimum wage is not enough to assure that all needs of the person are met, especially considering those working often have families that they need to take care of. Minimum wage is something that has begun to improve in some states, but it still has a ways to go to become a livable wage. The issue of this is not something that lies entirely within the states, but within the companies. Most of the companies those making minimum wage are working for are also some of the biggest and richest companies in the United States. For example, Walmart is the largest retailer in the United States, making $405 billion a year. If Walmart was its own country it would rank 19th in world based on its economy. The average hourly pay for an employee at Walmart is $8.81 an hour which equals a yearly salary of $15,576 a year, 16% below the 2011 federal poverty line for a family of three. These facts are especially staggering when you take into consideration that the top six Walmart executives made $59 million their last fiscal year and the six members of the Walton family, who own just 50% of the company are worth $100 billion. Walmart has stated in order to raise minimum wage they would have to pass the cost to the customer, why I am not sure, but even if they did it would only cost and average of $0.46 per trip, per customer if they raised it to $12. That is a price I know I would be willing to pay as someone classified as middle class. I probably lose about that much money, over time in my purse or in my car. Walmart is not the only company with similar statistics, but yet so many wonder why poverty in the United States is such an issue. The distribution of wealth in this country is disgusting, the wealthiest 25% own 87% of the wealth in the United States, which was $54.2 trillion in 2009. This is a huge issue in the United States and one we cannot continue to ignore. I do not have a definite solution to this problem, but we have plenty of places we can start because it is something that will only continue to get worse if something is not done. It can begin with increasing the level of education in impoverished communities and can also begin with a government mandated increase in minimum wage, in which the companies are responsible for, not neccesarily all companies because they might not have the finances to do so, but we can start with Walmart and go from there. I have always had a pretty open mind in regards to all the clients I have worked with and am going to work with. Working in the substance abuse field has basically required that as in the community I began working in and most communities, substance abusers were viewed as the bottom of the barrel. Most of the clients I worked with came from impoverished communities and those with little cultural compentency would often refer to these clients as scum because of the issues they dealt with associated with generational poverty. Moving to the area in which I live in Arizona is only going to increase my cultural compentency because of the cultures I will now be working with and guaranteed the effects of generational poverty are even more prevalent because of the size of the communities in this area. I am looking forward to continue my work here because I feel as though I have the empathy necessary for working with this demographic because I know that no one chooses to struggle and often the negative behaviors associated with this demographic are merely ways in which they have learned to cope with the issues they have dealt with and the only way to help them is by showing them care and understanding.

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Generational Poverty

...Reflective Paper Teresa A. Sigler BSHS 345 August 30, 2015 Chelie Byerly Reflective Paper Generational Poverty There is a strong family bond created within the family environment, especially when that family is struggling with generational poverty issues. There is a bond created between the parent and children that is so strong that generally most of the time the children will not break that bond and they will refuse to leave home. A majority of the children that are raised in generational poverty are lacking in several areas of education which is due to an extremely high dropout rate which is due to either considerably high rates of teenage pregnancy, or the student becoming frustrated with trying to learn. Coming from generally from single mother homes where the mother has to take whatever jobs that they can find, which tend to be low-paying and limited to no flexibility in scheduling, make it difficult at best for the mother to provide proper if any kind of structure for their children or for them to spend any kind of quality time with them. The older children that have dropped out of school are treated by the parent more like they are their own possessions now. Instead of teaching them the life skills and the other skills that they will need in order to survive in the real world on their own and to be successful for themselves. Instead, they have them taking care of the younger children so that the parent can go to work and put in more hours. This makes the......

Words: 1795 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Generational Poverty

...Generational Poverty Belinda UOP Diversity and Special Populations 345 Roberto Vara October 21, 2014 Generational Poverty Generational Poverty Generational Poverty is defined as a family having been in poverty for at least two generations meaning children of parents in poverty grow up to live in poverty themselves. It is important to understand the difference between Generational Poverty and Situational Poverty. A person or family can experience Situational Poverty when their income and support is has a set back due to a specific change in areas such as job loss, death, divorce or health issues. Although there can be a domino effect caused by this one particular change, families experiencing Situational Poverty have a tendency to remain positive and hopeful, knowing that this is a temporary setback. This typically is not so with generational poverty. (Susan E. Mayer 2008). Consequences of Generational Poverty It’s a sad thought that crime is one the most negative consequences of poverty. This occurs because a “culture of poverty” cultivates among families who struggle just to meet their basic needs. People develop beliefs that their chances are limited for future success. And one of the most discouraging things people turn to is crime as an alternate to getting employment. Another consequence of poverty is the lack of education. Actually there is a huge relation between the two. Illiteracy is a major problem among families who are part of the cycle of......

Words: 2015 - Pages: 9

Free Essay

Overcoming Generational Poverty

...Overcoming Generational Poverty Diana Rojas BSHS 345 August 12, 2014 Therese, DaSilva, LSSW Overcoming Generational Poverty Generational poverty is poverty passed down from generation to generation. Parents pass it down to their kids, and they received it from their parents. A vicious cycle can only be broken by raising above the current situation. In order to rise one must work and gain a greater income, if any, than what is currently being dealt with. It is a common truth that you can work yourself out of poverty. As easy as that sounds, many times this is almost impossible to achieve. Personal barriers that may harm success are stress, low self-esteem, isolation, and inadequate parenting competence. One can go into urban cities, rural areas, and ghettos and see the impoverished or underprivileged situations that many people live in today. The question often asked is; why do people live and think the way they do? Can they not move or get a better job? The sad truth is that for many people moving on does not come with ease. The factors for which many stay in the situation they are in is endless and often quite complex. Many times people face poverty because they lack the means to move up in life. This barrier often times comes from lack of education. In many areas instances, children never even make it out of high school because their presence is needed to work and help the family survive. Seniors are often faced with many challenges which lead them to fall into......

Words: 1331 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay


...diversity however when the topic of generational poverty and socioeconomic backgrounds are approached it seems to fall to choice more often than not.  If we can agree that a child can be born into affluence, why then is it so difficult to believe a child can inherit poverty as well?(Beegle, D. 2007)  Generational Poverty is a complex issue requiring a holistic approach.  Upcoming generations must actively work against the cycle of poverty. There are so many stigmas attached to devastating issues that it is difficult to identify the causes. It would seem that the major focus is the effects of poverty, not the causes. This is the case with generational poverty which is saddening; if the why is not identified, how then can a course of action be set into motion? Too often it is said, “Poverty is a choice, it’s their fault” and this could not be further from the truth. One of the most difficult issues around generational poverty is the way it is viewed by society and the other is the way political parties pass the buck back and forth. These views keep the issue stuck in the problematic zone, where no one is accountable and nothing can be done. (Search for Clarity and Truth. Pitts, S., Conservative. Kalamaya, R., Liberal.). So once the buck stops, if it stops at all, only then can the causes can be addressed. Where exactly does poverty stem from and what are the barriers that prevent people from escaping this inheritance? In his article “Poverty, Family Stress and......

Words: 1435 - Pages: 6

Free Essay

Brain Based Learning and Students from Poverty

...Brain-Based Teaching Methods/Solutions for Collegians in Poverty Abstract “The convergence of low literacy levels, poverty, an aging population, immigration, and the globalization of business means that working with the growing and significant segment of the population that comes from generational poverty is no longer just a moral obligation, it has become an economic imperative.” (Krodel, Becker, Ingle, and Jakes, 2008) This quotation highlights the plight of impoverished adults seeking a college education. Hampered by This paper first addresses key learning influencers such as memory, perception, emotion and cognition as they are affected by generational poverty. Then, the principles of brain-based learning are applied to suggest andragogy which mitigates these affects. The community college has been highlighted by no less than Barack Obama as one means to lift the mantle of poverty from those whose development and educational opportunities have been severely limited by virtue of their economic circumstances. In a June, 2009 appearance, the President noted that "community colleges are an essential part of our recovery in the present and our prosperity in the future." Its universal access, local influence and community reach make the community college an ideal institution to undertake this role. And, here in Cleveland, Ohio, this role is particularly critical. In 2012, Cleveland, Ohio was once again designated one of the “Poorest Big Cities in America,” a title......

Words: 1503 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay

Assignment Two

...Assignment Two: Outline & Preliminary List of Resources Nichole Catron Strayer University SOC100: Introduction to Sociology January 26, 2015 I. Hypothesis Those who live in poverty stricken neighborhoods tend to turn to crime due to very little access to job opportunities among other things. Research shows that areas with the most crime tend to be in neighborhoods with the highest rates of poverty. This is not a race issue, whether the community is predominately white or black studies show that disadvantaged areas have the highest crime rates. A disadvantaged area would be an area with crowded neighborhoods, underperforming public schools, single parent homes, and poor housing conditions. II. While some believe people put themselves in the situation and can move out of the neighborhood if they feel unsafe, others feel that they are stuck in the environment and cannot financially afford to move to a better neighborhood with lower crime rates. Due to little or no job opportunities and very little if any savings moving seems like just a fantasy to most. In the poverty stricken neighborhoods the rent tends to be very cheap so it is easy for a single parent or person with little or no income to maintain their household. III. Practical Implications Unfortunately this seems to be a viscous circle for those who grow up in this environment. It seems they turn to crime because of a lack of finances then end up in jail or in the system, which in turn then puts......

Words: 631 - Pages: 3

Free Essay

World Hunger poor countries live on farms and half the world’s people are farmers – therefore, minimizing an opportunity for lack of food and hunger (Macionis, 2010). This information coupled with the enormous amounts of food produced by other means leaves us to question why yet more than nine million people per year die from hunger??? World Hunger is an issue that crosses sociological boundaries at all levels, to include poverty, race, and economic limitations. While I’m sure there are some who would like to blame hunger on one social boundary over another – research indicates that famine is a form of global poverty that results from deliberate worldwide policies and the world produces enough food for every person in the world to eat plentiful (1986; Lappé, Collins, & Rosset, 1998). We must remain mindful that excessive hunger leads to sickness and disease, resulting in the inability to work and feed/provide for themselves and/or a family. A report in reveals that, “…hunger puts in motion a vicious cycle of reduced productivity, deepening poverty, slow economic development and resource degradation” (Staff Writers, May 2012). In summary, the inability to...

Words: 1068 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Childhood Poverty

...OF ISSUES RELATED TO CHILDREN LIVING IN POVERTY _________________________________________________ A PAPER SUMBITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR FS 5833: FAMILY ECONOMICS IN THE DEPARTMENT OF FAMILY SCIENCES TEXAS WOMAN’S UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF PROFESSIONAL EDUCATION BY SARAH KERAMATI ______________________________________________ DENTON, TEXAS APRIL 2012 Introduction Over the last few decades, the world has drastically changed, and the effect on the family dynamic has been profound. Today, there are more single parents, dual earner couples, and parents with more than one job living in both rural and urban areas in the United States than at any time in history (Miller, 2007). There is approximately one in five American children who live below the national poverty level (Meyer, Cancian & Nam, 2007). In today’s society, many people live below the poverty line and those numbers continue to increase because of our high unemployment rates. The Census Bureau reported that 12% of Americans live in poverty. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, the poverty level in 2009 for a family of four was $22,050. Working parents have no time and their finances are often strained. Welfare reform in the United States may pressure single mothers to be employed even though child care is expensive and they may barely make minimum wage (Miller, 2007). If a child experiences poverty during their preschool or early school......

Words: 3634 - Pages: 15

Free Essay

Study Guide

...POL 140 – STUDY GUIDE *NOTE: Not everything on this study guide will be on the exam and not everything on the exam is on this study guide. This study guide is exactly that, a guide. 1) What is comparative politics? * Why do we study it? What does it allow us to do? * How is it distinct from international relations (IR)? * Explain the significant relationship between comparative politics and IR. Give an example. 2) What a hypothesis? * Give an example. 3) What is a dependent variable? * Give an example 4) What is an independent variable? * Give an example 5) What are the three methods used to test hypotheses in comparative political analysis? Be able to explain each and note the costs and benefits of each. 6) Know the difference between empirical and normative studies. 7) Know the distinctions between the three types of pre-colonial societies that we discussed in class. * Acephalous societies * State societies * Empires * Know the differences of each. Pay attention to the details. 8) Colonialism – Why was Europe successful in colonizing the non-Western world? 9) What was the Maxim Gun? * How was it different than earlier machine guns? * What impact did it have on European colonization? 10) Who were the big players? * Latin America * Asia * Africa * Describe “the scramble for Africa” 11) What are the three Gs? * Gold * The Age of......

Words: 727 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Problems Encountered by Pupils of Grade Vi in the Implementation of 4ps

...PANTAWID PAMILYANG PILIPINO PROGRAM (4Ps) December 27, 2012 at 11:35am What is it all about? The Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) is a poverty reduction strategy that provides grants to extremely poor households to improve their health, nutrition and education particularly of children aged 0-14 by providing incentives for poor families to invest in their future by ensuring that mothers and children can avail the free healthcare as well as the free education for children. As such, it is a human development program that invests in the health and education of children. It aims to provide monetary aid to poor beneficiaries with the hope that these investments in human capital would lessen the great financial divide among the haves and the have nots. GOALS: (1) Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger (2) Achieve Universal Primary Education (3) Promote gender equality and empower women (4) Reduce child mortality, and (5) Improve maternal health and to promote Department’s commitment to United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Children OBJECTIVES #Social Assistance – to provide cash assistance to the poor, to alleviate their needs (short term poverty alleviation) #Social Development – to break the intergenerational cycle of poverty through investments in human capital (nutrition, health and education THE BENEFITS • Health and Nutrition Grant A household receives a total of P6,000 per year or P500 per month intended for health......

Words: 1712 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay

Impact of Urban Abosolute Poverty on Young Women

...ABSOLUTE POVERTY ON YOUNG WOMEN: A CASE STUDY OF EPWORTH BY MASARA WIRIRANAI. B. (R121680Y) FACULTY OF SOCIAL STUDIES DEPARTMENT OF SOCIOLOGY 2015 A DISSERTATION SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF BACHELOR OF SCIENCE HONOURS DEGREE IN SOCIOLOGY (SUPERVISOR Ms CHOGUYA) 1 Dedication I dedicate this research work to my late mother. You influenced every aspect of carrying out this study. It’s sad though that you are not around to witness who I have become. You may be gone but you are never over! 2 ACRONYMS ADB Asian Development Bank CSO Central Statistics Office DESA Department of Economic and Social Affairs Statistics Division ESAP Economic Structural Adjustment Programme FPL Food Poverty Line HDL Human Development Index MPSLSW Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare NGO Non-Governmental Organizations PASS Poverty Assessment Study Survey PDL Poverty Datum Line PICES Poverty and Income Expenditures Survey PRD Parliament Research Department PRFT Poverty Reduction Forum Trust TCPL Total Consumption Poverty Line UNDP United Nations Development Programme UNICEF United Nations Children’s Fund UNESASD United Nations Economic and Social Affairs Statistic Department UN-Habitat United Nations Human Settlement Programme USA United States of America Zimstat Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency 3 Abstract The study focused on identifying, measuring and assessing the nature and extent of impacts of urban absolute poverty on......

Words: 12395 - Pages: 50

Free Essay

Harlem Project Master

...I - INTRODUCTION: Historically, the American political system exists to govern and protect the social welfare of the people. Through the electoral process, governmental officials are chosen. The bureaucratic officials are influenced by four basic ideologies which guides their decision making process. Conservative, Libertarian, Liberal, and Radical are the four ideologies in question. Firstly, I will define the four political ideologies. Secondly, I will apply my definitions to a single example. Third, I will analyze the Harlem Project from a liberal and radical ideology’s perspective. Next, my analysis will be of the federal and local government, of the causes of the problem, of the strategies taken to solve the problem, and the core values that underpin the solution. Finally, I will incorporate systems terminology and apply systems concepts. II.- DEFINITIONS All four ideologies listed in this paper present a different view; however, several of them share overlapping similarities. People identifying with the conservative ideology believe in maintaining things, as they currently exist, personal responsibility, hard work, preserving tradition, moral values, and social stratification. Conservative officials focus on preserving conservative platforms and eliminating reforms established during periods of other ideological power. This group deduces that each individual should be responsible for gaining their own wealth through hard work and perseverance. The......

Words: 1945 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Role of Women in Economic Development

...Women’s Role in Economic Development: Overcoming the Constraints BACKGROUND RESEARCH PAPER Sarah Bradshaw, Joshua Castellino and Bineta Diop Submitted to the High Level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda This paper reflects the views of the author and does not represent the views of the Panel. It is provided as background research for the HLP Report, one of many inputs to the process. May 2013 Women’s role in economic development: Overcoming the constraints Background paper for the High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda Prepared by Dr. Sarah Bradshaw, Principal Lecturer, Middlesex University with Dr. Joshua Castellino and Ms. Bineta Diop, Co-Chairs of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network Thematic Group on the “Challenges of Social Inclusion: Gender, Inequalities and Human Rights” 20 May 2013 1 1. Introduction This short paper aims to highlight the important role women have and can play in economic development. It addresses three questions: what is the evidence base to support investing in women? What are the current constraints on realising the full potential of women in the process of economic development? What are the priority areas of intervention necessary to unblock these constraints? It is focussed on women and on economic development, rather than on the wider issue of gender and development. However, before looking at the evidence base, constraints, and interventions, it will provide a brief......

Words: 4100 - Pages: 17

Premium Essay

Reflective Paper

... The identification of the complex factors involved in overcoming generational poverty can be difficult because each case has its own special needs. While the challenges the aged face when there is lack of access to employment, women face dilemmas that keep them from obtaining proper work to take care of their families. The perception of these issues must be changed to one of understanding and change. Our world deserves a chance to move in a positive direction, and in order to do that we must begin with ourselves. Only then can we provide proper help to those in need and in unfortunate circumstances. Generational poverty is when a family has at the most two generations that have been produced in poverty (Robyn E. Blummer, 2013). Adults and children that are raised in this type of poverty have a mindset of mere survival. There are many challenges that occur in the life of an individual who is dealing with poverty. Emotionally, a child or adult may feel that he or she may never amount to anything that life can only be living to the minimal. Societal challenges, a child may be discriminated against at school for not having all the supplies he or she may need, therefore being called names, or being judged by teachers. Adults and children who live in poverty deal with stressors such as where the next meal is going to come from or how a bill is going to be paid. Adults and children who live in poverty do not always have the best health. Safety concerns are a factor......

Words: 1685 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay

Reflective Paper Bshs 345 Week 3

...Paper Daphne Jackson BSHS/345 April 18, 2015 Elaine McCullough "Generational poverty" is defined as having been in poverty for at least two generations. Generational Poverty creates a strong family oriented environment that is a bond that most children refuse to want to break by leaving home. In generational poverty, the players feel that society owes them a living whereas in situational, they often allow pride to keep them from accepting needed assistance. Most of the children that are raised in poverty have a lack of education resulting in a high dropout rate due to frustration in learning, teen pregnancy and other personal problems or situations. Children become possessions to their parents, instead of individuals that should taught the basics and values of life. So, they can feel prepared to move out on their own to achieve success within their lives and the future to come. In most households, older children tend to take care of the younger children; forming a sense of belonging to the family, which can result in the younger kids having a “fear factor” out living life on their own. Many single parents work longer hours to make ends meet, but a sacrifice of the inability to educate their children makes for low test scores in school. This type of situation causes educational boundaries that could cause illiteracy with children wanting to drop out because of anger and depression issues. Poverty can occur in one of two methods.   The first is caused by an event or......

Words: 812 - Pages: 4