Over 50 million US families can’t afford basics like rent and food

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More than 50 million households in the United States don’t earn enough to pay for basic expenses, including housing, food, health care, transportation and a mobile phone, according to a new study.

Combined, these 50.8 million households make up 43 percent of America’s 119 million households, according to the data released by the United Way ALICE Project.

This calculation includes the 16.1 million households in poverty as well as another 34.7 million families called ALICE, which stands for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed.

The so-called ALICE households earn above the US government’s official poverty level, but less than what it takes to survive in the modern economy, the study found.

“Despite seemingly positive economic signs, the ALICE data shows that financial hardship is still a pervasive problem,” said Stephanie Hoopes, the project’s director.

“This research dispels long-standing myths about financial instability by showing that ALICE families exist in every community…

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