Chronic poverty, disability, poverty, financial hardship, learning disability, depressive symptomatology


Data on poverty status reveals that there is a distinct sub-population of individuals who are at a significantly greater risk of being chronically poor. Although many researchers have examined the demographic characteristics of individuals who are the most likely to be persistently poor, the emphasis has been on race, sex, and education. Little attention has been paid to the role that disability might play in long-term poverty. Therefore, the objective of this paper is to utilize longitudinal Add Health data in order to explore whether or not the presence of a disability might also affect an individual’s likelihood of experiencing financial hardship. We find that in addition to race, gender, and education, individuals with a disability are at greater risk of being poor than their counterparts without disabilities. Overall, having a mental health, physical, or learning disability in childhood or adolescence was associated with straitened socioeconomic outcomes in adulthood.

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