Decreasing Nonmarital Births and Strengthening Marriage to Reduce Poverty.

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Amato, Paul R.
Maynard, Rebecca A.
Journal Article
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Since the 1970s, the share of U.S. children growing up in single-parent families has doubled, a trend that has disproportionately affected disadvantaged families. Paul Amato and Rebecca Maynard argue that reversing that trend would reduce poverty in the short term and, perhaps more important, improve children's growth and development over the long term, thus reducing the likelihood that they would be poor when they grew up. The authors propose school and community programs to help prevent nonmarital births. They also propose to lower divorce rates by offering more educational programs to couples before and during marriage. (Author abstract)