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Michigan's latest Kids Count numbers show its tougher to be a kid


UNDATED (WKZO) -- The latest Kids Count release out today shows that things are getting worse for kids in 8 of 15 well-being indicators.

Author Jane Zhender Merrill says the need for food assistance Jumped dramatically statewide, at a time when the state has been trying to reign in the program.

She says higher income communities had the better outcomes for kids but no area of the state escaped worsening conditions, for the period of study from 2005 to 2011.

She says the number of kids in poverty climbed statewide.

In kalamazoo it increased 49%, compared to a statewide increase of 28%.

The Rate of confirmed victims of child abuse and neglect went up by 56% in Kalamazoo County and by 28% statewide, and she says the state is beefing up its intake effort for these cases.

Ottawa County ranked #1 for child well being in this study, and Kalamazoo County ranked 49th out of the 82 counties, but she says the numbers got worse everywhere.

Some of the numbers where Kalamazoo improved the most would be in the MEAP scores, which you would expect with The Promise in place.

Kalamazoo County’s worst showing was in that child abuse and neglect number.

Kids Count Reports are compiled from government data and distributed to the media and to state legislators, hoping they will use the information to improve the lot of children in the state of Michigan.