Illinois Kids Count 2015 reveals child poverty rates are likely to remain high even as economy improves
- Published on Monday, 16 March 2015 10:15
Paul Logli, CEO/President of United Way of Rock River Valley, shares key findings from the Illinois Kids Count 2015 report during a recent news conference.
(Rockford, Ill. - 03/13/2015) – Child poverty rates in Illinois remain higher than pre-recession levels and are much higher than in 2000, according to the Illinois Kids Count 2015 report, Confronting Poverty, Creating Opportunity.
Local community leaders shared statewide key findings and Winnebago County data from the report during a recent news conference hosted by United Way of Rock River Valley. Speakers also provided local perspectives on how growing up in poverty can have adverse effects on the education, income, and health of our children and families, and offered key strategies for moving forward.
The new report, released by Voice for Illinois Children, reveals that the extent and persistence of child poverty reflect not only the lingering effects of the Great Recession, but longer-term economic trends as well. Child poverty rates are likely to remain high even as the economy improves. About one in five children in our state — more than 600,000 — live in poverty. Locally, the poverty rate in Winnebago County rose from 13 percent in 1999 to 27 percent in 2012 (statewide poverty rate rose from 14 percent to 21 percent within the same period).
The report also identifies policies at both the federal and state levels that have been effective in alleviating and reducing child poverty.
"We want our children to succeed in school and life. But we can't help our children if we don't provide opportunities for their families to succeed," said Paul Logli, CEO/President of United Way of Rock River Valley. "We need to encourage families, organizations, business leaders, policymakers, and everyone who cares about children in Illinois to make collective choices that will truly afford greater opportunities for all."
Over 30 members from local community organizations were on hand during the local release of the Illinois Kids Count 2015 report on Thursday, March 5. United Way was one of 11 sites throughout the State to host a local release event. Speakers included Logli; Ehren Jarrett, EdD, Superintendent of Rockford Public Schools #205; Courtney Geiger, Director of Mission Services at Goodwill Industries of Northern Illinois; and Sandra Martell, RN, DNP, Administrator of Winnebago County Health Department. Dora Watson, Legislative Assistant of Illinois District 67, read a message on behalf of State Rep. Litesa E. Wallace.
Local Community Findings: Winnebago County
United Way of Rock River Valley
United Way of Rock River Valley advances the common good in Winnebago and Ogle counties, creating opportunities for a better life by focusing on education, income, and health. United Way recruits people and organizations that bring the passion, expertise and resources needed to get things done. LIVE UNITED® is a call to action for everyone to become a part of the change.