Jason O. New York

Poverty In America

With America being one of the wealthiest countries in the world it is no surprise that many Americans overlook the fact that poverty is a serious issue in America, but this is a problem that shouldn’t be ignored.

Dear Future President,

     I am glad to be privileged enough to have a roof over my head, and to have education, health, food, and water. However, millions of Americans lack the money for all of these basic needs for life. Poverty is a serious issue that shouldn’t be ignored. I hope that in the next four years you will consider these problems and help those who need it the most.

     Based off of the U.S. Census Bureau findings, Bernadette D. Proctor stated that in 2015 43.1 millions of Americans were living under the poverty line which is equal to 13.5% of the total American population. About 20% of all the children in America are affected by poverty. Poverty is also especially bad for African Americans and Hispanic Americans 24% of all African Americans and 21% of all Hispanics live below the poverty line. This many people, especially the kids, shouldn’t be dealing with all these problems in one of the world's wealthiest nations.

     Poverty doesn’t just affect the individuals, it also affects the society around it. There seems to be a connection between poverty and crime. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics households living below the poverty line have more than a double rate of crime compared to high income households. People in poverty are sometimes forced to live a life of crime in order to survive, or live in high crime neighborhoods where they do not feel safe. High crime rates affect all of the country’s people and the society they are in. Poverty also affects the economy. According to the Do Something Campaign, 40% of kids living in poverty don’t have the money for an education and it can be hard for someone to find a job. Unemployment rates can cause difficulties for a country striving to create a strong economy. Unemployment also creates an even larger wage gap between the poor and rich.

     I care about the problem with poverty because I too have had to deal with poverty at one point. I have felt the effects of poverty on, the way I live and my future and I can tell you that no one should live like that. I understand that you are focusing on many other issues like terrorism, gun control, and immigration, but with fewer people in poverty more attention can be brought on to those problems. So I ask of you, future president to consider the problem of poverty in your presidential term.

Thank you for taking your time to read this,

Jason O.

Bernadette D. Proctor, Jessica L. Semega, Melissa A. Kollar. "Income and Poverty in the United States: 2015." US Census Bureau. N.p., 13 Sept. 2016. Web. 06 Nov. 2016.


"Poverty Facts | Poverty Rate, Poverty Thresholds & Census Information." Poverty Facts | Poverty Rate, Poverty Thresholds & Census Information. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Nov. 2016.


"Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) - Household Poverty and Nonfatal Violent Victimization, 2008–2012." Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) - Household Poverty and Nonfatal Violent Victimization, 2008–2012. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2016.


"11 Facts About Education and Poverty in America." DoSomething.org. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2016.


NYC Lab Middle School

NYC Lab Middle School

Lab students have been painfully subjected to three debates where they searched for policy talk. Four and a half hours later.. Now, our students will have the chance to speak about an issue of importance and possibly make a recommendation for improvement.

All letters from this group →