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Title: Working but poor: Asian American poverty in New York City
Keywords: Asian Americans—New York—New York—Economic conditions
Working poor—New York—New York
Issue Date: Oct-2008
Publisher: Asian American Federation
Place of Publication: New York
Description: For many years, the success stories of Asian Americans have masked the reality of families struggling to make ends meet. The fact that few poverty studies have included the Asian American population also has contributed to the invisibility of Asian Americans in poverty. To most poor Asian immigrants, the issue is not finding work but having the opportunity to earn a decent living to provide for their children and older family members. The primary hope for Asian American families in poverty is that their children will get an education that enables them to lift themselves and their parents up the economic ladder. This is the same dream that has inspired generations of immigrant families from various countries, dating back to the early days of the American republic. Working but Poor tells a story that needs to be told: a population mostly of immigrants who work hard in their active adult life and often after retirement. Their collective labor helps fuel New York City’s economy. Yet they remain poor, often unprotected, and trapped on the lower rungs of the economic ladder. This story raises a fundamental question of economic equity and equal protection under the social safety net. Since welfare reforms in the 1990s, the main focus of anti-poverty policy has been to reduce the number of people on government assistance. Mayor Bloomberg’s Commission for Economic Opportunity has presented a chance to take a more comprehensive approach. We applaud the mayor’s efforts and hope that this report will help inform the work of the New York City Center for Economic Opportunity. Similarly, we look to the philanthropic community for greater responsiveness to Asian Americans in need. Working but Poor is the first detailed study of Asian American poverty in New York City.
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Appears in Collections:Monographic reports and papers (Publicly Accessible)

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