Georgia ranks as one of the worst states to raise a family

Georgia is one of the worst states to raise a family, according to a report released on Tuesday.

The state ranks 42nd out of the 50 states in the analysis conducted by financial website WalletHub.

The states were evaluated based on factors such as socioeconomics, affordability, life expectancy, family-friendly activities, crime, education, childcare, divorce rates, among other things.

When it comes to family fun, WalletHub ranked Georgia 29th. 

The company calculated the share of families with children, the number of parks, recreational centers and other attractions close to children in the state.

About 24 percent of the state’s population is under 17 years, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Children do have a variety of options spread throughout Georgia for fun.

The state is home to Six Flags, the Atlanta Zoo, Georgia Aquarium, Wild Animal Safari and the Georgia Children’s Museum.

On health and safety matters, WalletHub’s analysis showed a higher risk for Georgia children compared to other states, ranking it 45th. The website considered crime rate, access to health care, life expectancy at birth, water quality, air population and social environmental factors.

Georgia has the fifth-highest rate of uninsured children in the nation, according to a report by the Center for Children & Families at Georgetown University released in October 2019. Children born in Georgia can expect to live about 77 years old, according to the World Bank. The nation’s life expectancy is about 79. The state’s maternal mortality rate is also 1.4 percent below the national rate.

Georgia’s school system ranks 35th nationally as does its affordability. 

The median family income in Georgia is about $55,000. The median gross monthly rent is $968 and the median monthly mortgage is $1383, according to the U.S. Census.

A child’s social environment plays a key role in his or her development, UNICEF data found. Factors like employment, poverty level and parental relationships are variables that were also evaluated in WalletHub’s study.

Georgia’s unemployment rate of 3.3 percent is low when compared to the national average of 3.5 percent, according to the November Department of Labor numbers. It ranks in the top 20, according to WalletHub, in job security and top 30 for job satisfaction and opportunities.

More than 14 percent of the population lives in poverty, however. The state also has one of the highest divorce rates in the nation, according to University of Washington researchers. About 22 percent of marriages end in divorce in Georgia, according to WalletHub, while 70 percent of family households are two-parent homes.

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