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Executive Summary:

The Index of Family Belonging & Rejection: State by State

Patrick Fagan

The richest state in the nation in terms of family life and family belonging is Minnesota. The poorest is Mississippi (or Washington, D.C., by far). Family intactness is a great gift, not only to the parents and their children, but to the community at large. The Index of Family Belonging and Rejection measures this for the nation as a whole and for the individual states. The contributions of family intactness are much greater than anything government money can buy, as the graphs contained in the Second Annual Index of Family Belonging and Rejection (2011) illustrate. This version of the Index is a breakdown, state by state, of the data published in that 2011 Index. Each page compares individual state performance on various child outcomes (high school graduation rate, eighth grade NAEP reading scores, child poverty, and births to unmarried teenagers). This permits the comparison of each state to the weakest and strongest states in each outcome category. Because social policy is executed at the state level, a breakdown of this data state by state is natural and fitting. We hope that this version of the Index will be informative to both state legislators and citizens.]]>