The High Price of Poverty

Ad Campaign Shows the Poverty Line Prices of Basic Necessities

Imagine if instead of $4.88 per gallon, your milk suddenly cost $24.40. It hurts, right? Well, that’s how buying everyday necessities can feel for families in poverty, reports the Huffington Post.

An ad campaign called Poverty Line Prices, launched last month by San Francisco Bay Area nonprofit Tipping Point Community and ad agency Goodby Silverstein & Partners, shows how the cost of basics, such as bus fare and milk, would feel if you were living on the poverty line.

For instance, if a gallon of milk costs $4.88, that’s about 0.02 percent of the annual income of someone living on the poverty line in the U.S., defined as $24,257 per year for a family of four. The ad multiplies the milk’s price by five, so it eats up the same proportion of a typical income in the San Francisco area of about $121,000 per year after taxes (the city’s average salary is about $107,000, reports the San Jose Mercury News). Suddenly, a gallon of milk costs a whopping $24.40.

About 13.5 percent of Americans were living in poverty last year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. 



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