Inflation hits 40-year high, impacts families’ daily routines

Published: Jul. 13, 2022 at 7:19 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Surging prices of pretty much everything from food to gas to rent sent inflation skyrocketing to a 40-year high in June putting even more strain on families struggling to make ends meet.

The federal government said it’s the biggest 12-month increase since 1981.

That’s why the Birmingham Police Department is helping relieve some of the pressure, organizing a back-to-school supply drive.

“We’re looking for everyday school supplies,” said Public Information Officer for BPD, Keaira Turner.

A recent study shows the average cost of a backpack with school supplies was $75 a student last year.

And this year, it’s expected to be $90 for elementary school students – $115 for high school students.

Birmingham police are working to ease the pressure.

“Community engagement is one of our main focus with here at BPD. Inflation is on the rise with different things especially with school supplies, and with school going back in August, we want to be able to make sure that our community members have as much as possible,” Turner said.

Experts say August and September will be particularly hard for families trying to stretch their dollars, but it’s not just school supplies hurting their pockets.

Consumer prices soared 9.1% from a year ago and people are feeling the pinch in their daily routines.

“It will permeate every aspect of our lives in a negative way,” said Retired Marketing and Logistics Professor for UAB, Dr. Bob Robicheaux.

“Many people just don’t understand it. They don’t think about economics and how things that are going on and being said on television about something with the economy affects them,” Dr. Robicheaux said.

He said inflation is a silent tax we all have to pay.

New research from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York said inflation hits lower-income, Black, and Hispanic families especially hard with incomes disproportionately spilt between necessities like food, gas, and housing.

Dr. Robicheaux hopes inflation will soon reach its peak.

“Inflation will come down. It’s a matter of time, but as we know, this is a 40-year high. And this is a particularly hard hit, but I think that the American people are going to wise up and get their act together. Anything we can do to help the country work better is going to in the long run benefit us,” Dr. Robicheaux explained.

Experts said consumer spending is starting to come down, and with job growth continuing to expand, some experts say we can still avoid a recession.

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