West Coast Poverty Center

Poverty News

Poverty and Income Inequality Increase in Washington State

After holding steady for two years, new data from the US Census Bureau show that the poverty rate in Washington state rose from 13.5% to 14.1% between 2012 and 2013. The number of Washingtonians living in poverty also rose during that period, from 915,278 people to 967,282.

Most states saw no change in their poverty rates or numbers, but New Jersey and New Mexico joined Washington as the three states with increases in both poverty rates and the number of poor people.

The new data also show that median income in Washington ($58,405) was unchanged from the year before, although a measure of income inequality in the state increased. Continue reading here.


U.S. Poverty Rate drops slightly between 2012 and 2013 but the number of poor Americans holds steady at 45.3 million

According to a new U.S. Census Bureau report, the poverty rate has dropped for the first time since 2006. The overall poverty rate for 2013 was 14.5 percent, slightly lower than the 15 percent poverty estimate for 2012. Although the poverty rate has declined, it is still 2 percentage points higher than the poverty rate in the year before the Great Recession. The number of Americans estimated to be poor held steady between 2012 and 2013 at 45.3 million. Read the full report here.

New Research

Longitudinal Associations between Poverty and Obesity from Birth through Adolescence

Crystal HallWCPC Affiliate Hedy Lee and colleagues investigated the relative timing of low-income and becoming obese in a multi-city sample of American children. They found that living in a family with income below 200 percent of the federal poverty thresholds before age two was associated with an increased likelihood of becoming obese. Learn more here.