Thursday, September 27, 2012

New poverty estimates paint grim picture for many communities throughout Colorado

New data released from the U.S. Census Bureau's annual American Community Survey show a continued struggle for many Colorado citizens as recovery stagnates.

  • The overall poverty rate in Colorado was statistically unchanged from 2010 to 2011. In 2011, more than 674,000 people, or 13.5 percent of the state's population, lived below the federal poverty line.
  • In 2011, 9.1 percent of Colorado families lived in poverty a 0.3 percentage point decrease from 2010. However, in 2007 only 8.4 percent of Colorado families lived in poverty.
  • The Colorado child poverty rate was up almost 2 percentage points in 2011 compared with the 2007 level. In 2011, more than 211,000 children, or 17.5 percent of all Colorado children lived in poverty.
  • 6.1 percent of Colorado's population lived in deep poverty, or below 50 percent of the federal poverty line 2011.

Click to enlarge

Taking stock of the most recent data from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey, it is clear that many Coloradoans are still struggling to cope with the effects of the 2007 recession. It is also clear that typically disadvantaged demographic groups such as the African-American or Latino communities are facing huge challenges as poverty rates hover around 25 percent. Furthermore, there is great inequality between men and women as women face an economic reality with higher rates of poverty and lower annual earnings. In light of the disparity in economic well-being demographic categories, policy makers need to place priority on developing a pathway to self-sufficiency that will provide education, jobs and a higher quality of life for all Coloradoans regardless of race, gender or class.
The Colorado Center on Law and Policy's analysis of the newest Census Bureau Data looks at poverty from several angles, including race, gender and family type.

The Colorado Center on Law and Policy, is a nonprofit, nonpartisan research and advocacy organization seeking justice and economic security for all Coloradans. 

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