Poverty thresholds are dollar estimates of the amount of annual income needed to support families of various sizes.
Poverty guidelines: a simplified version of poverty thresholds issued by the Department of Health and Human Services to determine who is eligible for various federal programs designed to help families in need.
Vicious Cycle: They are poor because they do not have the skills to be productive, but because they are poor, they don’t have the money to acquire the skills necessary to get a good job. To make matters worse, they also lack the money to provide their children with the kind of education that will help them find good-paying jobs in the future.
Welfare programs: Local, state, and federal governments have created a number of programs to help the poor.
Temporary Aid to Needy Families ( TANF ) is a monthly cash assistance program for poor families with children under the age of eighteen.
The food stamp program allows needy individuals to exchange stamps for food products at authorized stores. In some places, the Electronic Benefits Transfer ( EBT ) has replaced actual food stamps with a debit card.
The Child and Adult Care Food Program ( CACFP ), which provides federal grants of money and food to nonprofit elementary and secondary schools and child-care institutions so that they can serve milk, well-balanced meals, and snacks to children.
The Special Supplemental Food Program for Women, Infants, and Children ( WIC ) provides food for pregnant and nursing women, as well as for infants and children under the age of five.
Earned Income Tax Credit ( EITC ) is a reduction in the amount of income tax a worker owes.