Households Receiving Temporary Assistance
What does this measure?
The number of households that received any public assistance or welfare payments in the past 12 months, expressed as a percentage of total households.
Why is this important?
This measure represents the number of households which rely upon government support to meet their basic needs.
How is our county doing?
In 2010-14, 3.2% of Essex County households received public assistance income. This was little changed from 2000, and similar to the state rate (3.0%) and the nation (2.8%) in 2010-14. The cities of Lawrence (6.3%) and Lynn (5.5%) had the highest rates in Essex County in 2010-14.
How do we compare to similar counties?
Essex County's 2010-14 rate was higher than the rates in Lake, IL (2.2%) and Westchester, NY and Middlesex, MA (both at 2.1%).
Notes about the data
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) is a federally funded program administered at the state level, meaning that eligibility requirements vary from state to state. ACS does not ask specifically which program provides the income, although TANF is the primary source of public assistance funds. Families are eligible for TANF benefits for up to 60 months, although most receive assistance for shorter periods of time.