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From the Introduction

Understanding the impact of poverty can be aided by careful measurement. Statisticians and economists, both within the government and in the private sector, collect and analyze such statistics.

Disagreement about the interpretation of those figures can make it difficult for most people to know how they should respond to specific cases of poverty they encounter. For a meaningful discussion to take place, the existing understanding should be presented. This report summarizes the existing research on poverty and provides the interested reader with resources to continue learning about the topic. This report does not offer policy advice or direction to organizations seeking to engage with the problems surrounding poverty. The experience of poverty is contingent on a variety of factors that describe a person’s quality of life.

Relevant factors of an individual’s likelihood to experience poverty include: education, family composition, race, type of community (rural or urban), region of the country, and medical history.