Poverty in America

40% Of Americans Can’t Cover $400 In An Emergency 

The most fundamental aspect to achieving financial stability is a healthy savings account. The basic act of saving money over time so that funds can be drawn upon in case of an emergency is necessary when it comes to being financially secure. But according to recent data from the Federal Reserve Board, four in ten Americans are unable to come up with $400 in an unexpected emergency.

This is the fifth survey conducted by the Federal Reserve Board that looks at the overall economic health of Americans. Known as the ‘ Survey of Household Economics and Decision-making, ’ this study examined the income, employment, unexpected expenses, banking and credit, housing, education, and retirement planning of 12,000 individuals between November-December of 2017.

Although this data actually shows an improvement from 2013 when fifty percent of American adults could not cover the same expense, the recent findings raise concerns over the basic financial stability of individuals in this country. The study also found that over 20% of American adults are unable to pay all of their current month’s bills in full, and 25% of American adults skipped necessary medical care in 2017 because they were unable to afford the cost. The study states, “Altogether, one-third of adults are either unable to pay their bills or are one modest financial setback away from financial hardship.”

A few likely factors that could contribute to this economic insecurity include wage stagnation, increasing student loan debt, and the prevalence of the opioid crisis. At JOIN PDX, we work hard, not only to assist individuals experiencing homelessness, but to advocate for meaningful change that will improve the conditions that cause financial insecurity in the first place.

JOIN believes that everyone deserves a place to call home. We have helped over 8,900 men, women, and children make successful transitions out of homelessness and into permanent housing. If you’d like to help us continue to advocate for our community in order to prevent homelessness, please consider making a donation to our organization today.