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Report Recommends "Two-Generation Approach" to Tackle Poverty in AZ, U.S.

PHOTO: Working with parents and children together, rather than separately, may help advance efforts to end the cycle of poverty in Arizona and across the U.S., is the finding of a new report. Photo credit: U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services
November 12. 2014
PHOTO: Working with parents and children together, rather than separately, may help advance efforts to end the cycle of poverty in Arizona and across the U.S., is the finding of a new report. Photo credit: U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services

PHOENIX - Efforts to end the cycle of poverty in Arizona may advance if policymakers focus on a two-generation approach that involves parents and children. That's the finding of a new report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, on creating opportunity for families.

Dana Wolfe Naimark, president and CEO of Arizona's Children's Action Alliance, says working with children and parents together may provide more long-term benefit than working with them individually.

"We will be most successful with our public policies and our community strategies if we pay attention to children and their parents at the same time, and not always do separate strategies," Says Wolfe Naimark.

The report finds nearly 300,000 Arizona children ages five and under are growing up in low-income families and a child raised in poverty is more likely to become an adult living in poverty, less likely to graduate from high school or remain consistently employed.

Wolfe Naimark says Arizona already has programs in place to provide quality child care and education for children, while their parents are working or at job training programs.

"Helping low-income working parents pay for child care that's a two-generation strategy, because it provides work stability for the parent, and security, but also early education and safety for the children," she says.

Wolfe Naimark adds, Arizona's economy can also benefit from the two-generation approach, since parents will likely miss less work if they have access to quality child care.

Troy Wilde, Public News Service - AZ