Feminisation of poverty is a phrase heard frequentlytoday, not only in the popular press, but also in professional groupsconcerned with women. It suggests that women living alone with theirchildren bear a disproportionate share of the poverty burden. Thefollowing questions are discussed Is this a crisis for Americansociety Is the standard of living getting worse for women and children,even as it improves for the general population If it is, why is ithappening And finally, what could be done about it Data are examinedthat show that feminisation of poverty is a significantproblem in the United States. The reasons women are more likely to bepoor include inadequate paying jobs, an expanding labourforce, andunique problems associated with female headofhouseholds. Solutions tofeminisation of poverty include raising low income jobs via minimum wageand comparable worth legislation, establishing and enforcing realisticchild support and spousal maintenance levels, significantly raising thelevel of public support programmes for children, making availablereasonable educationtrainingretraining programmes for women,emphasising the prevention of poverty, and providing better healtheducation and chemical dependency intervention.
International Journal of Social Economics – Emerald Publishing
Published: May 1, 1990
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