Who Are the Great Unemployed?

great unemployed, poverty, suddenly poor, foreclosure,Those of you who know me know that I studied poverty in the US several years ago. To review the old information on the heels of the optimists trumpeting that the Great Recession is over shows that the Great Recession isn’t over at all.

And now I have become one of the Great Unemployed and the lessons I learned have come back to haunt me in a very personal way. I have not finished with this subject and I am not going to play nice girl any more.

Get ready. The articles below are just curations. To read the whole thing, click on the title or the URL at the end of each article.

I am going to reissue some information from the report I wrote 8 years ago. While the information may be out of date, the problem obviously is not. I have to tell you that this is not for the faint of heart.

New information from the Huffington Post 7.14.14

What It’s Like To Be Suddenly Poor And Homeless At 70 written by Sandi Bachom. (I have rearranged what she said.)

Reversal of Fortunes:

I’m a new demographic… what I call, “suddenly poor”… people who have had money and because of some unforeseen circumstance are now broke. Many are homeless and most are seniors. I’m on Social Security, Medicare and food stamps, which makes me a Socialist I guess. But it wasn’t always like this. I used to be rich….

Truth be known, most of us are hanging by a thread, keeping up appearances. We’re all just one bad thing away… one illness, one firing, one SUV coming out of nowhere and mowing you down….

I’ve known the endorphin rush, walking down Fifth Ave carrying a bag filled with $3,000 worth of Prada… and the dull dread of seeing a $23 balance on my food stamp card, two weeks before it’s refilled….

I hope the Mayor sees this. Hell, I hope the President sees this….

Good and decent people are suffering, who have never suffered before. We are the invisible diaspora, in our 60s and 70s, living on the edge, hanging by a thread, embarrassed and riddled with fear and hopelessness, borrowing a couple of bucks to feed our cats.

I think it’s harder for the men, they hold it in, sitting in the darkness, quietly wondering, “How did I get here”?

Follow on Twitter @SandiBachom

To read the whole article got to http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sandi-bachom/homeless-seniors_b_5285631.html Continue reading

New York Times-Middle Aged Suicides and Poverty

Number in Poverty and Poverty Rate: 1959 to 20...
Image via Wikipedia

This article will examine information of the problem of becoming suddenly in need and how it affects the middle class in Fort Worth, Tarrant County, Texas, America and the rest of the world. I will show how it has been studied by the U.S. Census Bureau and make references to various dissertations, position papers, speeches and local agencies’ information on the subject.

On February 19, 2009 The New York Times Published an article by Patricia Cohen entitled “Midlife Suicide Rises, Puzzling Researchers.” Cohen quotes from “a new five-year analysis of the nation’s death rates recently published by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.” The study shows that the suicide rate among 45-54-year-olds increased nearly 20 percent from 1999 to 2004, the latest year studied. For women in this age bracket the rate rose 31 percent and for men the rate was 15.6 percent.

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Poverty of information on Poverty Spells

This article will examine information of the problem of becoming suddenly in need and how it affects the middle class in Fort Worth, Tarrant County, Texas,American and the rest of the world. I will show how it has been studied by the U.S. Census Bureau and make references to various dissertations, position papers, speeches and local agencies’ information on the subject.

I began seeking articles about poverty spells, particularly the first spell.  I expected to find a wealth of information, but instead found precious little on the first poverty spell.

While very out of date one of the first articles on poverty spells was an NBER Working Paper Series;  “Slipping into and Out of Poverty: The Dynamics of Spells”; by Mary Jo Bane and David T. Ellwood; Working Paper #1199; National Bureau of Economic Research ; 1050 Massachusetts Avenue; Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138; September, 1983; hereafter referred to as Bane and Ellwood.

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Poverty, Age and Suicide

bag ladyLooking at people dealing with their first cycle in poverty and we see  interesting corrolations between poverty, suicide and age.

Suicide

On February 19, 2009 The New York Times published an article by Patricia Cohen entitled “Midlife Suicide Rises, Puzzling Researchers.”  Cohen quotes from “a new five-year analysis of the nation’s death rates recently published by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”  The study shows that the suicide rate among 45-54-year-olds increased nearly 20 percent from 1999 to 2004, the latest year studied.  For women in this age bracket the rate rose 31 percent and for men the rate was 15.6 percent.

This is a great increase when compared to the less than 2 percent suicide rate for 15-to-19-year-olds, who have been the intense scrutiny of news attention and prevention resources.

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The first poverty spell

Valencia and 14th, San Francisco

Image via Wikipedia

This article will examine information of the problem of becoming suddenly in need and how it affects the middle class. This is a relatively new problem that is a result of the Great Recession. I will show how it has been studied in various dissertations, position papers, speeches and local agency information on the subject. Bear with me. This is a long blog.

I began seeking articles about poverty spells, particularly the first spell.  I expected to find a wealth of information, but instead found precious little on the first poverty spell.  While very out of date one of the first articles on poverty spells was an NBER Working Paper Series;  “Slipping into and Out of Poverty: The Dynamics of Spells”; by Mary Jo Bane and David T. Ellwood; Working Paper #1199; National Bureau of Economic Research ; 1050 Massachusetts Avenue; Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138; September, 1983; hereafter referred to as Bane and Ellwood.

Continue reading