Poverty on the Rise in U.S.

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama says last year was a tough year for working families, and new Census figures are quantifying that.

The Census Bureau's annual report on the economic well-being of U.S. households finds the poverty rate climbed to 14.3 percent last year. That's about 43.6 million people or about one in seven Americans.

The report also finds that the share of Americans without health coverage rose to 16.7 percent, or nearly 51 million people. That was mostly the result of people losing employer-provided health insurance during the recession. Congress passed a health overhaul this year to address the rising numbers of uninsured people, but its main provisions will not take effect until 2014.

Broken down by state, Mississippi had the highest share of poor people, at more than 23 percent, followed by Arizona, New Mexico, Arkansas and Georgia. On the other end of the scale, New Hampshire had the lowest share, at 7.8 percent.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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