Poverty rates in the U.S. are 25.9% for American Indians, 22.1% for African Americans, 21.2% for Hispanics and only 7.5% for Non-Hispanic whites. Those living in poverty face many issues that contribute to poor health, which include substandard housing, a lack of transportation, close proximity of fast food restaurants, a lack of grocery stores carrying healthy foods and pharmacies with personnel that are not bilingual. In addition, Americans that live in poverty also do so in neighborhoods that have higher crime rates, lack recreational parks, and in some cases even sidewalks.
These barriers to healthy eating and physical activity increase the risk of obesity and related disease states. It is important that small businesses who operate in low income neighborhoods be permitted to do so to bridge the healthcare gap and allow those who live in poverty access to the same healthcare resources as Americans who do not live in poverty.