“Confronting Suburban Poverty” was the focus of the Human Services Summit 2014 sponsored by United Community Services of Johnson County Tuesday morning. Participants learned that poverty in Johnson County has more than doubled from 2000 to 2012 with 37,500 people living below 100 percent of the federal poverty level. Only Jackson County has more poor individuals than Johnson in the metro.
Slightly more than half the poor live in family households that include children. Two-thirds of the working age poor were working full-time, part-time or in temporary work.
The trend for poverty to move to the suburbs is not unique to Johnson County. It is happening across the nation. Have you noticed signs of increasing poverty in Johnson County? What do you think are the most important steps to address the situation? Which institutions — governments, non-profits, businesses or religious organizations — could do the most to improve the situation?