When the President discussed the State of the Union this week, he recognized that family is important. This is confirmed yet again in Census data, that the state of the family determines the state of the union. When only 45 percent of American 17-year-olds have been raised in a home with their married biological parents, the majority of our families have been weakened, to the detriment of our economy and of society at large. This is seen in decreasing income and productivity, increased dependence on the government and public healthcare, and declining educational achievement.
But, when the family is stronger the nation is stronger.
This week we released our report on the state of the American family, authored by Pat Fagan, Ph.D., Henry Potrykus, Ph.D., and Nicholas Zill, Ph.D. This report shows how Census data support the centrality of marriage to the success of public policy in the U.S.
The Third Annual Index of Family Belonging and Rejection shows that a mere 45 percent of American 17-year-olds have been raised in an intact, married family (that is, with their biological parents married to one another). It also includes the Index of Family Belongingacross the 50 states and the 45 largest cities in the country.
The report U.S. Social Policy Dependence on the Family, which is derived from the Index, shows family intactness to be a highly influential factor in shaping outcomes such as income and productivity, dependency on the government, healthcare, educational achievement, and teenage out-of-wedlock birth.
SPECIAL: Watch the Index Release event online here.