CBS Detroit

LANSING (AP) – The number of Michigan children living in poverty soared to more than a half-million by 2011 as many families in the state continue to face low wages, unemployment and cuts in social programs, according to a new report released Thursday.

The annual Kids Count in Michigan Data Book found the number of children living in families with incomes below the poverty level grew 28 percent between 2005 and 2010. The report defines the poverty level for a single parent with two children as an annual income of about $18,000.

Jane Zehnder-Merrell, Kids Count in Michigan project director at the Michigan League for Public Policy, said many families are struggling to provide for children in their “formative years when they need adequate nutrition, stable housing and quality care to prepare them for adulthood.”

The report examines four areas of child well-being: economic security, health, family and community, and…

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