Chesterfield ranks only half of national poverty rate

In an ideal world, children live carefree. They play with friends, eat nutritious food and receive a good education. They don’t worry about paying bills or searching for their next meal. They’re nurtured, protected and guided by caring adults who provide all their basic needs. Eventually, they become productive members of society. Such are fundamental rights, not privileges. And yet, the United States — one of the most powerful and prosperous countries in the world — has the second highest rate of relative child poverty among economically developed nations.

Countrywide, Virginia is in the top10 of the most cared-for children. Virginia is number eight in Early Foundations & Economic Well-Being, Number 11 in Health Rank and a ranking of 14 in Education Rank.

Chesterfield is right up to par with a $73,363 mean household income although the per-capita income is $32,500, which is shy of the national rate. About 6.2 percent of residents live under the poverty line, which is about half of the national rate, according to the most recent census information.To put that in perspective, about a fifth, or 16.1 million, of all American children are impoverished, according to the Children’s Defense Fund. In the U.S., a baby is born into poverty every 32 seconds. Every day, 66 babies die before their first birthday. If that isn’t enough to shake one’s moral foundation, consider this: By the end of the day, 1,837 children will have been confirmed as being either abused or neglected. Gail F. Melson, Professor Emerita, Department of Human Development and Family Studies, Purdue University compared the 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia based on their numbers of underprivileged children.

By examining 16 key metrics — ranging from infant death rates and children in foster care to child food insecurity rates and percentage of maltreated children — we were able to provide an insightful look into the living and economic conditions of youth in each state.

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