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Poverty and Public Health
Sat February 2, 2013
Study: Majority Of Working New Mexicans Live Paycheck To Paycheck
Key points of the 2013 Assets & Opportunity Scorecard report that most New Mexicans live in asset poverty. In other words, they lack both financial assets, like bank accounts and homes, but also lack education and educational opportunities.
Residents that fit this description are considered “liquid asset poor” which means
they don’t have an emergency savings account that would allow them to go
through any hardships like job loss, illness, divorce, or death.
Ona Porter, an advocate and CEO with Prosperity Works, says without an
emergency savings fund, people in crisis often do one of two things:
"One is they crash and burn, so they really drop significantly in their income, those are the people who become poor very quickly, but the other thingis that they also fall immediately into the hands of predatory practices, which are
one of the very high costs of being poor. If I lose my job and I can’t feed my kids I
know that a payday loan costs a huge amount of money, but I’m gonna feed my
kids and hope that I can figure out how to repay this loan.
Porter hopes the report will help to educate policy makers to focus on legislation
that would assist New Mexicans in need.