Measures of Material Hardship: Research Brief. What do recent SIPP data tell us about material hardship among families with children?

07/27/2004

Descriptive analyses of the SIPP measures most frequently used to assess material hardship find, not surprisingly, that:

  • Families with children who have low incomes and limited assets experience material hardships more often than their counterparts with higher incomes and assets.
  • Families that are headed by a single adult are more likely to experience basic needs or food security hardships than households with married adults or multiple adults.
  • Families with children who are in need generally experience multiple hardships; the presence of one hardship is a good predictor of other hardships. This is especially the case among households with incomes under 100% of the federal poverty level.

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