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The economic recovery from the Great Recession has undeniably been a slow-moving process. This is particularly relevant for low-income earners in the state of Rhode Island. Though the poverty level in Rhode Island is lower than the national poverty rate (at 15.9 percent), it has remained consistently high for the New England area, albeit considering the recent decrease from 14 percent in 2011 to 13.7 percent in 2012. In spite of such improvement, poverty persists throughout the state, particularly with respect to low-income earners but also among middle-income earners, primarily because of job loss (particularly in the diminished steel manufacturing industry), low-wage jobs, and/or stagnant income.

Current State of Poverty

According to the 2012 American Community Survey issued by the U.S. Census Bureau, 13.7 percent of Rhode ...

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