According to a new analysis released by the Human Needs Index (HNI), states with greater remoteness have higher levels of need than government measures suggest.
The HNI, a joint project between The Salvation Army and the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, tracks changing levels of need across geographies and over time. It is based on The Salvation Army’s basic assistance including meals, groceries, clothing and furniture – as well as help paying for housing (mortgage/rent assistance), medical/prescription expenses and energy bills. The HNI is the first multi-dimensional measure of human need based on objective data from a nonprofit on the front lines of providing social services. It serves as a powerful tool to track need with different indicators and less lag time than conventional government data.
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"The Human Needs Index helps us understand that the needs and the challenges facing those in poverty in rural America may be quite complex – and how we address them may differ from the needs of those living in poverty in urban areas," said Una Osili, Ph.D.
One potential explanation for remote states showing higher levels of need than those indicated by government measures is that households in remote areas may face challenges in accessing government services. If need in these states is not being identified or met by government services, it would be expected that these states would have higher HNI values, since The Salvation Army provides services to households located in remote areas.
Read the full article by The Salvation Army published by Financial Content
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