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The number of people living in poverty has climbed to 14.3 percent of Americans, the highest rate since 1994.

The Census Bureau said in a statement on its website that about 43.6 million people, or 1 in 7, were in poverty last year.

That’s up from 39.8 million, or 13.2 percent, in 2008, in the third consecutive annual increase.

The bureau added that there were 8.8 million families living in poverty in 2009.

  • The poverty rate for African Americans, Asian Americans, and Hispanic Americans increased in 2009.
  • One in four African Americans and one in four Hispanic Americans are now living below the federal poverty line.
  • One in five children (20.7 percent) under the age of 18 are living below the federal poverty line.

Read more at MSNBC News

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