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PNS Daily Newscast - August 13, 2020 

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Report: More Illinois Children Living in Poverty and Financially Unstable Homes

July 29, 2009

CHICAGO - An increasing number of Illinois children and families are slipping into poverty and facing uncertain financial futures, according to the latest "Kids Count Data Book." It says the percentage of Illinois children living in poverty increased 13 percent between 2000 and 2007.

The state maintained its overall ranking of twenty-fourth in the nation in children's well-being, no change from the previous report. However, Gaylord Gieseke, interim president of the group Voices for Illinois Children, Gaylord Gieseke, says kids and their families are being hard-hit by the recession.

"Some Illinois families who were securely in the middle class are sliding into poverty, and those who were already in poverty are slipping even further. They are losing jobs and homes, watching helplessly as the value of their assets plummet and losing services on which they urgently rely."

The news in the report was not all bad for Illinois children, as the state's infant mortality, teen pregnancy and high school dropout rates all have fallen since 2000. In fact, Illinois was one of five states with the biggest overall improvement in rank between the 2000 and 2007 reports.

Gieseke believes the findings are promising, but warns they should not overshadow the impact of the current recession.
This the twentieth year Kids Count has provided such information and trends by state. View the state reports online at

Aricka Flowers, Public News Service - IL