Senator Bernie Sanders made all sorts of good points in his speeches in Pine Ridge, Rapid City, and Sioux Falls yesterday (see full video below). Among them, the durable Democratic Presidential candidate said that poverty is not just an economic problem but an effective death sentence, corresponding to lower life expectancies in low-income areas.
Governing presents some data from the National Survey of Children’s Health that appears to fit the assertion that poverty and poorer health outcomes for children go hand in hand:
Nationwide, children’s health status and healthy weight correlates neatly with family income: lower income (measured relative to the Federal Poverty Level in these charts) correlates with more kids in fair or poor health, and higher family income means higher percentages of kids at healthy weight.
Interestingly, the numbers don’t correlate quite as neatly in South Dakota:
The bottom and top income brackets match the federal correlation, although it’s worth noting that we have much smaller percentages of kids in fair/poor health than the national average. Puzzlingly, the middle income categories in South Dakota deviate from the straight correlation.