The Generational Cycle of Poverty

1 in 6 children in Massachusetts grow up in poverty — for a family of four with two children, that was $23,283 per year in 2012.

Children who experience poverty before the age of 9 are at higher risk of developing behavioral disorders, greater morbidity for chronic disease, and are more prone to developing “learned helplessness” behaviors, factors that lead to gaps in college attainment and socioeconomic status as adults. This is the generational cycle of poverty.

Children from low-income households who attend college

Children from middle-income households who attend college

Children from high-income households who attend college

Breaking the Cycle

State Representative Tom Sannicandro (D-Ashland) and State Senator Michael Moore (D-Milbury) have filed a bill called An Act to Break Generational Cycles of Poverty. The bill would empower adults collecting welfare who have children to improve their educational attainment, climb the economic ladder, and allow their kids to grow up in a higher socioeconomic class.

Parents collecting welfare are eligible

They enroll in a community college for a certificate or associate degree program.

The parent is connected with a work-study job

The job supplements their income and builds skills for the working world.

They acquire a certificate or associate degree

This person now begins a career with better pay and advancement opportunities.

The cycle of poverty is broken

The child of the parent now has a higher chance of attending college and being successful.

Why We Need This

Our supporters

Crittenton Women's Union
Subcommittee on Student Debt
Massachusetts Community College Executive Office
Workforce Solutions Group

Sign the Petition

Help pass An Act to Break Generational Cycles of Poverty

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