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One in Four Oregon Children in Poverty, Report Says

Children First for Oregon

Nearly one in four Oregon children lives in poverty. That's according to a new report on child well-being.

Credit Children First for Oregon

The 2014 Progress Report from Children First for Oregon shows about 23 percent of children in the state live in poverty. The report defines poverty at or below an annual income of 23-thousand - 50 dollars for a family of four. Tonia Hunt is Executive Director of Children First for Oregon. She says for very young children, poverty can mean less stability, access to health care, and inadequate childcare while parents are working.

Hunt: "Those all cumulatively can oftentimes have a low-key traumatic effect that begins to layer upon itself so that kids then enter school with this history of trauma, with this history of lack of nurturance, lack of needs being met."

Hunt says this makes kids less ready to learn and less likely to be successful in the future. The report shows Oregon ranks 30th in the nation for the percentage of children with health insurance. It also has a higher than average rate of children entering foster care.


Copyright 2014 KLCC

Rachael McDonald is News Director at KLCC. She’s been with the station for more than 10 years. Previously, she established the Richland, Washington bureau for the Northwest News Network. She also worked as News Director at KAZU in Monterey, California. Rachael has won numerous awards for her reporting.