Economy
Children Living in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity, 2013-17


Children Living in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity, 2013-17

What does this measure?

The number of children under 18 living below the federally defined poverty line, expressed as a percentage of all children under 18 within a racial and ethnic group. Poverty thresholds vary by family composition and year. In 2017, the threshold for a four-person family with two children was $24,858.

Why is this important?

Children raised in impoverished environments are at higher risk for a wide variety of health and social problems, including poor performance in school. The challenges they face in childhood can diminish their chances for successful adult lives. Throughout the nation, racial disparities across many indicators of well-being (including poverty rates) are persistent, troubling and in need of attention.

How is our county doing?

Poverty rates were much higher among African American (47%) and Hispanic (49%) children in 2013-17 than for white children (20%). Poverty rates for African American and Hispanic children were much higher than at the state (38% and 39% respectively) and national levels (36% and 30% respectively). Erie's child poverty rates increased by 7 percentage points among Hispanic children, 8 points among white children and were flat among African American children from 2000 to 2013-17. The county's increases for white and Hispanic children were larger than those at the state and national levels.

Erie City had higher child poverty rates than the county for all groups, and its white and Hispanic child poverty rates in particular were much higher than for the county as a whole.

How do we compare to similar counties?

Comparable counties had similar disparities among racial and ethnic groups - all the counties had poverty rates around 50% for African American children and around 20% for white children. Two counties were at about the 50% level for Hispanic children (Erie and Luzerne, PA) while two (Broome, NY and Stark, OH) were quite a bit lower.

Notes about the data

Poverty status is not reported for people in institutions, including college dormitories and military barracks, and people in living situations without conventional housing. The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group.

The multiyear figures are from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey. The bureau combined 5 years of responses to the survey to provide estimates for smaller geographic areas and increase the precision of its estimates. However, because the information came from a survey, the samples responding to the survey were not always large enough to produce reliable results, especially in small geographic areas. CGR has noted on data tables the estimates with relatively large margins of error. Estimates with 3 asterisks have the largest margins, plus or minus 50% or more of the estimate. Two asterisks mean plus or minus 35%-50%, and one asterisk means plus or minus 20%-35%. For all estimates, the confidence level is 90%, meaning there is 90% probability the true value (if the whole population were surveyed) would be within the margin of error (or confidence interval). The survey provides data on characteristics of the population that used to be collected only during the decennial census. Data for this indicator are released annually in December.

Children Living in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity, 2013-17
AsianBlack or African AmericanHispanicWhite
United States12%36%30%16%
Pennsylvania14%38%39%14%
Erie County, PA21%****47%49%20%
Broome County, NY28%****50%43%17%
Stark County, OH5%******50%31%**16%
Luzerne County, PA31%****57%50%20%
Erie City27%****46%62%34%

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%. The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African-American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group.




Number of Children Living in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity, 2013-17
AsianBlack or African AmericanHispanicWhite
United States408,6053,671,8725,322,3917,899,618
Pennsylvania13,218134,022114,396268,495
Erie County, PA271****2,6922,1309,441
Broome County, NY317****1,6781,0535,051
Stark County, OH26******3,222822**10,731
Luzerne County, PA276****2,3246,00910,165
Erie City242****2,3821,8914,307

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%. The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African-American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group.




Children Living in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity, 2000
AsianBlack or African AmericanHispanicWhite
United States14%33%28%11%
Pennsylvania17%36%38%10%
Erie County, PA12%47%42%12%
Broome County, NY21%51%43%13%
Stark County, OH14%38%18%10%
Luzerne County, PA10%49%40%14%
Erie City32%48%46%18%

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%. The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African-American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group.




Number of Children Living in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity, 2000
AsianBlack or African AmericanHispanicWhite
United States343,7253,467,9003,339,1705,469,560
Pennsylvania9,115129,20454,030234,932
Erie County, PA552,7961,1017,019
Broome County, NY2161,1266105,306
Stark County, OH483,3842117,703
Luzerne County, PA496315588,909
Erie City402,7071,0273,168

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%. The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African-American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group.




INDICATORS TREND | ERIE COUNTY
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Maintaining
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Employees Increasing
Tourism Spending Maintaining
Median Age Increasing
Population by Age Not Applicable
Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Total Population Decreasing
Foreign Born Population Increasing
Household Types Not Applicable
Average Household Size Maintaining
Single-Parent Families Increasing
Median Household Income Maintaining
Public Assistance Maintaining
Change in Average Salary Decreasing
Unemployment Rate Increasing
Unemployment Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Employment by Sector Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty by Education Level Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates Decreasing
Homeownership Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Housing Affordability for Homeowners Maintaining
Median Rent Maintaining
Student Performance in Grade 3 Reading Increasing
Student Performance in Grade 3 Math Increasing
High School Cohort Graduation Rate Maintaining
Per Student Spending Maintaining
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
Education Level of Adults Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Air Quality Increasing
Water Quality Maintaining
Recycling Tons Per Capita Maintaining
Solid Waste Per Capita Maintaining
Vehicles by Fuel Type Not Applicable
Mortality Rate Decreasing
Death from Heart Disease Decreasing
Death from Cancer Decreasing
Death from Stroke Decreasing
Death from Chronic Lower Respiratory Disease Increasing
Hypertension Prevalance Increasing
Diabetes Prevalence Increasing
Asthma Increasing
People Without Healthcare Coverage Decreasing
People Without a Primary Care Physician Increasing
Routine Checkups Increasing
People Who Cannot Afford Healthcare Decreasing
Adults Who are Overweight or Obese Increasing
Children Who are Overweight or Obese Increasing
Teens Who are Overweight or Obese Increasing
Adult Smokers Decreasing
Physically Inactive Adults Decreasing
Binge Drinking Maintaining
Infant Mortality Decreasing
Low Birth Weight Babies Not Applicable
Live Births to Teen Mothers Decreasing
Non Smoking During Pregnancy Increasing
Early Prenatal Care Increasing