More and more children are expected to end up in poverty, with ugly effects lasting long beyond a better economic and employment picture. That's one finding from the Illinois Kids Count 2010 Report, released Thursday by advocacy group Voices for Illinois Children.

More and more children are expected to end up in poverty, with ugly effects lasting long beyond a better economic and employment picture.


That's one finding from the Illinois Kids Count 2010 Report, released Thursday by advocacy group Voices for Illinois Children.


The report shows how the economic recession is hurting state children and families in a variety of areas, from poverty to education and health care. Childhood poverty is expected to top 24 percent statewide by 2011 - the highest level since the 1960s.


"The effects of economic crisis can be devastating to children in the short-term and long-term," said Kathy Ryg, president of Voices for Illinois Children. "We must act now to help children and families in need. We know that children who grow up in poverty fare worse than their peers, even well into adulthood, in education, work and health."


The median income in Illinois has not kept up with inflation, the group found. Median family income fell by more than 12 percent from 1999 to 2008 in some downstate counties, and Sangamon County saw a drop of 6 percent during that period.


More people are also seeking help from the state. Food stamps went to 1.5 million Illinoisans in June 2009 – up 22 percent from 2007. Half of those recipients were children.


GateHouse News Service State Capitol Bureau