Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Poverty is the New Middle Class

As more and more people are finding themselves unemployed and underemployed, the amount of people living in poverty is increasing.

The federal government defines the poverty level as a family of four living on $21,000.  Since the majority of New Jersey households spend more than the recommended amount of 30% of their income on housing costs, the poverty level is defined as $42,000 for a family of four.

Living at this level of income, leaves very little money for other essential living expenses such as food and clothing.

The maximum weekly benefit for unemployment in New Jersey is $584, which is equivalent to $30,368 annually.  Typically it takes a year for the unemployed to return to employment because jobs are scarce and the unemployment rate is high at 10.1%.  Causing people to forgo essential purchases and living on a significantly reduced budget.

To complicate matters further, people are taking parttime or are underemployed.  Taking parttime jobs and jobs at reduced pay or out of the fields results in them earning far less.  Also, preventing people from being able to return to the same standard of living they enjoyed before losing their job. 

Even though the job outlook seems bleak, there are still jobs out there.  Here is a list of the top 10 jobs which are still in demand:

1. Registered nurses

2. Home health aides

3. Customer service representatives

4. Food preparation and serving workers

5. Personal and home care aides

6. Retail salespersons

7. Office clerks

8. Accountants

9. Nursing aides, orderlies and attendants

10. Postsecondary teachers

In new global economy, it remains important to become educated and pay close attention to job trends.  This will help rise above the poverty line.


Unemployment: Where are the Jobs?
More Children Slipping Below the Poverty Line

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