Marriage Reduces Likelihood of Child Poverty by 82 Percent


Heritage’s blog, The Foundry, recently shared an illuminating chart (see below) that demonstrates the connection between child poverty and being raised in single-mother households.

Today, one out of every four children lives with only his or her mother. Of those children in single-mother homes, 58 percent are impoverished. In contrast, as Heritage’s Robert Rector points out, marriage reduces the probability of child poverty by 82 percent. Growing up with a married father can have significant impact on a child’s economic, social, and psychological well-being.

“[R]edefining marriage further distances marriage from the needs of children and denies the importance of mothers and fathers. Redefining marriage rejects as a matter of policy the ideal that children need a mother and a father,” explains Heritage’s Ryan T. Anderson. “Redefining marriage diminishes the social pressures for husbands to remain with their wives and children, and for men and women to marry before having children,” he continues.

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