This is IN THE NEWS in VOA Special English.

    A new report says the poverty rate in the United States last year was the highest since nineteen ninety-three. The official rate was 15.1 percent, up from 14.3 percent in two thousand nine.

    Poverty meant yearly income, or earnings, of less than twenty-two thousand three hundred dollars for a family of four.

    The recession lasted from December of two thousand seven to June of two thousand nine. Since two thousand seven, the poverty rate has increased more than two and a half percentage points.

    The new findings did come as a surprise to Michael Ferrell of the Coalition for the Homeless in Washington, DC.
    这份新的研究结果令华盛顿特区无家可归者联盟(Coalition for the Homeless)的迈克尔·法瑞尔(Michael Ferrell)深感意外。

    MICHAEL FERRELL: "Unless there's a turnaround within the economy in the very near future, it's most likely to get worse."

    The Census Bureau says median household income fell more than two percent from two thousand nine to two thousand ten. Median means half earned more and half earned less. Last year, the median income was about forty-nine thousand dollars. The Census Bureau says more than forty-six million people were living in poverty. It was the largest number since estimates began in nineteen fifty-nine. They included more than one-fourth of blacks and Hispanics, twelve percent of Asians and about ten percent of non-Hispanic whites.

    Some economic measures were unchanged. Women in full-time, year-round jobs continued to earn an average of seventy-seven percent as much as men did.

    The number of people without health insurance rose from forty-nine million to almost fifty million last year. But the rate -- 16.3 percent -- was about the same as in two thousand nine.

    Most Americans who have health insurance get it through their employers. Elise Gould at the Economic Policy Institute says people age eighteen to twenty-four are the least likely to get insurance plans through their employers. But she says young people are facing fewer barriers because of the nation's new health care law.
    大多数美国人通过雇主获得医保。经济政策研究所的爱丽丝·古尔德(Elise Gould)表示,18至24岁人群通过雇主获得医保的可能性最低。但她表示,由于美国的新医保法案,年轻人面临的障碍已经减少。”

    ELISE GOULD: "Health reform played a key role in stemming the fall of workplace coverage for young adults. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly known as health reform, included provisions that allowed young adults up to age twenty-six to secure health insurance coverage through their parents' employer-sponsored health insurance policies."

    Experts say the biggest driving force of poverty is unemployment. About fourteen million Americans are unemployed. Millions more have stopped looking for work or wish they could work more hours.

    Las Vegas, Nevada, is famous for its casinos and hotels. But the city was hit hard by the recession and the housing market crash that helped cause it. Former construction worker Richard Scanlon is disabled, but he says many able-bodied friends are out of work.
    内华达州的拉斯维加斯因赌场和酒店而著名。但由于经济衰退和房市崩溃,拉斯维加斯遭受了沉重打击。前建筑工人理查德·斯坎伦(Richard Scanlon)身患残疾,但他表示很多身体健全的朋友都丢掉了工作。

    RICHARD SCANLON: "Ten, fifteen years ago, if you couldn't get a job in Vegas, you weren't looking for one. Now it's tough."

    Family Promise is a national group that helps people get jobs and housing. Director Terry Lindemann says Family Promise of Las Vegas works with religious organizations that offer short-term housing.
    Family Promise是一个帮助人们获得工作和住所的全国性组织。该组织负责人特里·林德曼(Terry Lindemann)表示,拉斯维加斯Family Promise与提供短期住所的宗教组织一起合作。

    TERRY LINDEMANN: "We bring together Catholics, Protestants, Jewish congregations, Muslims, to open up their congregations at night to be overnight shelters."

    Cassendra Waller is a mother of two. She got help to move into a new apartment.
    卡桑德拉·沃勒(Cassendra Waller)是两个孩子的母亲。她得到帮助搬进了一个新公寓。

    CASSENDRA WALLER: "When you get a job and you're making a minimum wage, how do you pay a babysitter for two kids every day? I wound up homeless several times. And this is the worst I've seen the homeless in Vegas."

    Stephen Brown is an economist with the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He says the city is starting to get more visitors again. But he says that will not solve the bigger economic issues.
    斯蒂芬·布朗(Stephen Brown)是内华达州拉斯维加斯大学的经济学家。他说,拉斯维加斯已经开始再次迎来更多游客。但他表示,这无助于解决更大的经济问题。

    STEPHEN BROWN: "So what we really need is for the forces that were pushing population to Las Vegas in the past to resume. And that really means that the whole US economy needs to get moving again."