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Single motherhood seen key factor in rise of US poverty

September 16, 2010

Family breakdown and out-of-wedlock births are decisive factors in the growth of poverty in the US, according to a new study from the Heritage Foundation.

Children born to a single mother are five times more likely to live in poverty than children born to married parents, notes Heritage expert Robert Rector. With the rate of out-of-wedlock births soaring—and already accounting for a majority of African-American (72%) and Hispanic (51%) newborns—the rise in poverty rates is not surprising, the study argues. Rector suggests that US policies should be aimed toward strengthening family life rather than encouraging dependency.


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