10 Jan 2003

More American Samoan children living below poverty line

11:15 am on 10 January 2003

According to a report released by the US-based Population Reference Bureau and the Annie E. Casy Foundation, more than two-thirds of children living in American Samoa are living in families well below the poverty line.

The report called Children of American Samoa: Results of the 2000 Census, draws from US census data from 1990 and 2000 and compares conditions of American Samoan children and those living in the US.

The report says as the number of territorial children grew significantly in the 1990s so did the number living in poverty.

The report calls the child population in American Samoa the most vulnerable population segement involved in the census.

It says between 1990 and 2000 the percentage of American Samoa children living below the poverty line increased from 62 percent to 67 percent.

The reports also noted that 45 percent of the territory's population was under 18 compared with 26 percent in the US as a whole.