The approximately 1.4 million children who comprise nearly one quarter of Missouri’s population are more likely to live in poverty than Missouri’s children in 1990 according to the KIDS COUNT® Data Book released June 17, 2019 by the Annie E. Casey Foundation.
In 1990, 17 percent of Missouri’s children lived in households with incomes below the federal poverty line, and in 2017, 19 percent of Missouri’s children lived in poverty. While many of Missouri’s indicators have remained stable or improved between the 2018 and 2019 KIDS COUNT® Data Book, small percentage increases in teens not in school or working and not graduating on time, as well as an increase of children in single-parent households, children without health insurance and in children whose parents lack secure employment are predictors of future economic instability when these kids become adults. While Missouri’s ranking on the health domain improved from 33rd to 32nd place from 2018 to 2019, the child and teen death rate continues to rise. In 2017, the rate stood at 36 per 100,000, or 521 deaths, between the ages of 1-19.
- - Count all kids. Ensure the 2020 census counts all children, especially those under age 5 and from hard-to-count areas.
- - Expand the programs that make and keep kids healthy. In Missouri, staying committed to ensuring all children have access to high quality, reliable, affordable health care including Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
- - Provide the resources that are proven to help families lift themselves up economically. Federal and state earned income tax credits (EITC) and child tax credit programs mean working parents can use more of their take-home pay to meet their children’s needs.