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POVERTY BY AGE

While they say little about economic ups and downs in the decade between Censuses, income and poverty data provide us with economic "snapshots" of an area at the time of enumeration that can in turn be compared with economic data gathered from earlier Censuses. Poverty status, as measured in this chart, is determined by Poverty Thresholds, which take into account a number of factors, including income and family size and structure. For example, the 2000 Poverty Threshold for a family of four in the continental United States with two related children was 17,463. However, Poverty Thresholds are misleading because they do not provide an accurate picture of what a “poor” family’s life is like. According to the National Center for Children in poverty, most families of four would have to make twice their assigned Poverty Threshold in order to provide their children with basic necessities, such as housing, food, and health care.

Poverty by Age, 1990 and 2000
1990 2000
Number Percent Number Percent
Total Population* 480,749 100.00% 468,453 100.00%
In Poverty 152,042 31.63% 130,896 27.94%
Not in Poverty 328,707 68.37% 337,557 72.06%
11 Years and Under 91,775 19.09% 83,356 17.79%
In Poverty 43,164 8.98% 35,580 7.60%
Not in Poverty 48,611 10.11% 47,776 10.20%
12 to 17 Years 43,758 9.10% 44,210 9.44%
In Poverty 19,644 4.09% 16,127 3.44%
Not in Poverty 24,114 5.02% 28,083 5.99%
18 to 64 Years 283,471 58.96% 286,783 61.22%
In Poverty 74,069 15.41% 68,721 14.67%
Not in Poverty 209,402 43.56% 218,062 46.55%
65 Years and Above 61,745 12.84% 54,104 11.55%
In Poverty 15,165 3.15% 10,468 2.23%
Not in Poverty 46,580 9.69% 43,636 9.31%

* The total population is the population for which poverty status is determined. Therefore, the total in this table should not be expected to match the total population in the population growth topic.

Source: Census 2000 analyzed by the Social Science Data Analysis Network (SSDAN).

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