How has each state in the US fared since 1980, after which time two hard recessions rocked the nation? The Today Show website takes a look with an interactive map that shows some states rebounding, only to lose footing once again as the Great Recession took hold:
A new interactive map from The Associated Press shows in stark relief how some states gained ground in the fight against poverty, particularly during the economic boom times of the late 1990s and early 2000s, before backtracking over the past few years.
The graphic rendering of poverty data released by the U.S. Census last week also shows that some states are faring better than others when it comes to poverty. Still, not many states have escaped the recent economic malaise without some increase in the percentage of people struggling to make ends meet.
“There are very few places that haven’t been affected by the last two recessions,” said Scott Allard, associate professor at the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration and an expert on poverty.
Allard notes that some of the states dealing with highest rates of poverty also are struggling with severe budget issues, which may make it harder to help those in need.
“Many of the states that have some of the highest levels of poverty (are) struggling with making some of the most severe cuts to social programs,” he said.