What steps can you take that are likely to keep you from living in poverty?
Well, actually, according to the Brookings Institute, a D.C. think-tank, there are three:
Get a high school diploma, work full time, and delay having a child until you are married.
Your chances of living in poverty in the USA are about 12%. Follow the three steps just detailed and your risk of being poor is reduced by over 80%!
In 1987 the magazine The Economist published an article that also listed three steps to avoid poverty:
Get a high school diploma, never leave a job except for another job, and get married and stay married.
Those three seemingly innocuous (common sense?) steps are the foundation that will keep an individual out of poverty AND also increase the odds in your favor of joining the middle-class by almost 20%. The three steps are the foundation of financial achievement.
However, statistical trends in our society are moving away from all three and it is the reason why poverty rates are climbing on average but, more alarmingly, in specific sectors of our population.
Almost 30% of kids live in single-parent households; this figure is 30% higher than it was in 1970. And poverty rates in those households are five times higher than two-parent households.
Among women under 30, more than 50% of births are to unwed mothers.
There are two other trends that are striking—college grads are tending to marry other college grads and to stay married. In other words, those at that end of the income spectrum are getting the word while those at the other end are not.