(Courtesy Cronkite News Service)

PHOENIX (Cronkite) – Arizona scrapes along the bottom of the nation in children’s well-being, ranking 46th in 2019 Kids Count data released Monday. Lack of affordable housing emerged as a pressure point.

Arizona dropped one place from last year in the annual report on states. But child advocates often have called out Arizona for low rankings over the years.

The 2019 data, released by a national network of activist groups including the Children’s Action Alliance in Arizona, tracks key markers for children’s well-being, such as housing, poverty, education and health.

32% of Arizona children live in a household with high housing costs

The report shows children in Arizona are 1% more likely than the national average to live in a household where 30% or more of income was allocated to housing costs. According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, families paying more than 30% on housing-related costs are considered cost-burdened and are more likely to face difficulties paying for necessities like food, transportation and clothing. Arizona ranks 37th in the nation by this metric.