Lower-income families do not just struggle when it comes to paying the bills at the end of the month. People who are economically disadvantaged are faced with a number of challenges that stretch far beyond their inability to make ends meet. Here are three of the most surprising difficulties that afflict people living in a lower-income bracket.
They Are Out of Shape
There is a consequence of not having the time and money to take care of yourself. People in lower-income brackets are less likely to have disposable free time to exercise. This lack of physical activity contributes to the fact that people who do not earn as much money are more out of shape than individuals who earn a higher income. People who are teetering on the brink of poverty will also not be able to afford healthy food items. This lack of nourishment is a major contributor to one’s overall health. It is no surprise that many people without adequate financial resources and free time turn to quick and cheap food at the drive-thru rather than picking out fresh food to prepare at home.
You Lose Benefits
Living in a low-income bracket often means that you aren’t able to take advantage of crucial work benefits. You may not be able to secure employee benefits such as health insurance and disability insurance. This means that one health issue could set you back even further, creating an endless cycle of not being able to provide for your family. In some industries, if you don’t make enough, then you don’t get workers’ comp. Fortunately, there is a host of low-income relief services that are specifically designed to help eligible families. The challenge is equipping the needy citizens with the knowledge and tools to find the services that are best for their needs.
Poor Educational Opportunities
While the US boasts a public educational system that is accessible to all children regardless of their income levels, each district is not created equal. Every district in the nation receives a set amount of funding that is predetermined at both the federal and state level. In addition to this funding, the local governments and private money from citizens help provide the schools with the tools and infrastructure that they need to serve the students. Because of this structure, it is not surprising that schools in wealthier districts receive more funding at the local and private level. This means that students at these schools are provided with access to many more opportunities than children who attend schools in poorer areas. Students who receive a subpar education are less likely to be encouraged to attend college. This is a cycle that is difficult to break, preventing many families from ever climbing out of the bottom income bracket.
In addition to worrying about one financial setback sending them spiraling into poverty, low-income families are faced with a host of related challenges. In order to address the issues associated with living in a lower income bracket, it is important to fully understand the whole picture.
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