Childhood poverty is a growing issue in America as more and more children are living below poverty line of $22,050. 00 a year for a family of four. Because of the recession we are in and dominant single parent families in the country, we have a rising rate of childhood poverty. Many times poverty leads to poor choices both in and out of school for these young kids, mainly because of the lack of accountability in the household.
The main reasons that children of poverty turn to crime is a lack of parental supervision, higher unemployment rate and the poor role models the children have in the environment they grew up in. When a family struggles financially it does not only create problems in the bank account, but it can create discomfort between spouses which can lead to a higher divorce rate. “children who are reared in poor families are more likely to fail in school, dropout of school, get arrested,” says Ron Haskins, co-director on children and families at Brookings institution.
Children living in poverty most likely have a parents with very little education. If their parents don’t have value on education the child won’t have the support at home required to succeed in school themselves. Thus as exiting school and trying to get a job that pays enough to survive they will struggle and resort to crime as means to get by. Single mothers are the majority of single parents it can be hard for women to steer their young sons in the right direction which can also contribute to a crime-filled path.
With an astonishing percentage of 53. percent of households headed by females its hard for mothers to support their families. Sometimes these mothers work two or three to help make ends meet. With their mothers working and fathers simply not around many kids have no adult supervison and tend to make poor decisions without repercussion. Without learning early on that poor behavior can have a negative consequence, these children are doomed to continue making negative choices. Another reason kids living in poverty turn to crime is that they lack a support system in role models.
A lot of time kids coming from low income families or single-parent families live in government housing or assisted housing programs and don’t always have the best environment surrounding them. We would like to think regardless of our income our children would look to athletes and such for mentors, but a lot of time in low income areas, kids see the ones maybe who deal drugs or commit other illegal acts as their role models simply because they have the money and other luxuries. In conclusion, childhood poverty leads to a higher chance of a life filed with crime.
With the unemployment rate going up and the single-parent households increasing, it’s easy for kids to fall victim to street crimes to achieve a better life they were dealt. A lot of people don’t witness kids substituting crime for the income their parents can’t provide. However living in the area where I grew up, I witnessed things like this first hand. Kids shop lifting, stealing cars, or maybe even dealing drugs just to survive. Sadly I don’t think it’s something that will ever be controlled. There will always be poverty which will lead people to committing crimes to make it.
Courtney from Study Moose
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