AS/COA Online - Latin American Childhood Poverty under the Lens

 Latin America’s middle class expansion has been heralded in recent years, but childhood poverty rates remain a hurdle for many countries. Roughly 45 percent of people under 18 live in poverty, according to a joint survey of 18 countries in the region conducted by the Economic Commission for Latin America (ECLAC) and the Caribbean and UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF). But this blanket statistic masks a wide range in poverty rates from country to country, with figures ranging from 20.5 percent in Costa Rica to 86.8 percent in El Salvador. Given that Latin America has the second-youngest population in the world after sub-Saharan Africa, creating a path to social mobility for the region’s youth could be the key to shrinking inequality.

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