Children And Youth
Children Living in Poverty


Children Living in Poverty

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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. 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.

How is our county doing?

In 2013-17, about 25,700 children in Essex County were living in poverty, or 15% of all children under 18. This was up from 12% in 2000 and similar to 2008-12. The county rate was similar to the state rate but below the national rate of 20%.

Within Essex County, the cities of Lawrence (31%) and Lynn (27%) had the highest child poverty rates in 2013-17. The percentage in Lawrence was similar to 2000, while Lynn had an increase since 2000 of 4 percentage points. Two other cities experienced double-digit increases since 2000: Haverhill (at 21%, up from 13%) and Peabody (at 18%, up from 6%).

How do we compare to similar counties?

Essex County's rate in 2013-17 was higher than the comparison counties of Lake, IL (11%),Westchester, NY (12%) and Middlesex, MA (9%).

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 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
20002008-122013-17
Essex County, MA12%15%15%
Amesbury2%***4%***
Beverly8%12%*11%**
Gloucester12%12%*9%*
Haverhill13%18%21%
Lawrence32%39%31%
Lynn23%29%27%
Methuen10%10%*15%*
Newburyport7%3%***13%***
Peabody6%3%**18%
Salem12%20%*23%*
Andover4%4%**4%**
Boxford1%2%***6%***
Danvers3%6%**5%***
Essex6%0%***7%***
Georgetown4%1%***3%***
Groveland7%4%***2%***
Hamilton5%5%***12%**
Ipswich8%1%***7%***
Lynnfield2%1%***2%***
Manchester2%4%***0%***
Marblehead6%6%***3%***
Merrimac1%3%***11%***
Middleton2%3%***2%***
Nahant3%0%***2%***
Newbury3%10%***1%***
North Andover3%2%***5%**
Rockport3%3%***9%***
Rowley6%24%***7%***
Salisbury10%2%***10%***
Saugus5%9%**12%**
Swampscott4%7%***9%***
Topsfield0%15%***0%***
Wenham2%4%***0%***
West Newbury4%18%***7%***
Middlesex County, MA8%8%9%
Lake County, IL7%12%11%
Westchester County, NY11%12%12%
Massachusetts12%14%15%
United States17%21%20%

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%.




Number of Children Living in Poverty
20002008-122013-17
Essex County, MA21,82325,49725,681
Amesbury82***159***
Beverly644849*780**
Gloucester791641*438*
Haverhill1,9002,5022,938
Lawrence7,2208,5536,360
Lynn5,4646,3616,159
Methuen1,0611,153*1,595*
Newburyport231114***466***
Peabody602350**1,631
Salem9941,548*1,696*
Andover331320**355**
Boxford2152***123***
Danvers173338**258***
Essex480***57***
Georgetown8518***54***
Groveland12856***32***
Hamilton124127***262**
Ipswich23331***200***
Lynnfield5528***73***
Manchester2349***0***
Marblehead291308***156***
Merrimac1355***143***
Middleton4059***39***
Nahant180***11***
Newbury52144***14***
North Andover195167***370**
Rockport5539***110***
Rowley88332***88***
Salisbury17122***147***
Saugus249476**589**
Swampscott140229***298***
Topsfield6245***0***
Wenham1833***0***
West Newbury48216***80***
Middlesex County, MA24,37826,35129,453
Lake County, IL13,48423,53220,106
Westchester County, NY25,41726,88625,404
Massachusetts177,383195,519198,980
United States11,711,49115,188,84414,710,485

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%.




INDICATORS TREND | ESSEX COUNTY
Bachelor's Degree or Higher by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Preterm Births Increasing
Infant Mortality Rate Maintaining
Children with Elevated Blood Lead Levels Decreasing
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children Living in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Child Abuse and Neglect Increasing
Disengaged Youth Decreasing
Live Births to Teen Mothers Decreasing
Youth Arrests Decreasing
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Maintaining
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Employment Maintaining
Tourism Spending Increasing
Voter Participation Rate Increasing
Charitable Contributions Maintaining
Protected Land Not Applicable
Days with Good Air Quality Increasing
Beach Contamination Decreasing
Daily Water Use per Resident Decreasing
Crimes Against People Increasing
Crimes Against Property Increasing
Drug-Related Arrests Maintaining
Reports of Domestic Violence Increasing
Incarceration Rates Decreasing
Recidivism Decreasing
Households Without Vehicles Maintaining
Means of Transportation to Work Not Applicable
Traffic Injuries and Fatalities Maintaining
Households With Internet Access Increasing
Change in Total Population Increasing
Change in Population by Age/Gender Not Applicable
People 65 or Older Living Alone Decreasing
People with Disabilities Increasing
Households by Type Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families by Gender Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Foreign-Born Population Increasing
Language Diversity Increasing
Change in Total Jobs Increasing
Change in Jobs by Sector Not Applicable
Change in Average Salary Increasing
Change in Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
Median Earnings by Occupation by Gender Not Applicable
People Entering/Leaving County for Work Not Applicable
Employer Size Not Applicable
Self-Employment Revenue Decreasing
Unemployment Rate Increasing
Unemployment Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Prekindergarten Participation Not Applicable
Female Enrollment in School Not Applicable
Chronically Absent Students Increasing
Per-Student Spending Increasing
Bullying Maintaining
Student Performance on Grade 3 Reading Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 8 Math by Student Group Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 10 English Language Arts Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 10 Math Not Applicable
High School Cohort Graduation Rate Increasing
High School Cohort Graduation Rate by Student Group Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults Not Applicable
Income in Relation to Poverty Level Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Median Household Income Decreasing
Median Household Income by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Median Household Income by Household Type Not Applicable
Living Wage Rate by Household Type Not Applicable
Households Receiving Temporary Assistance Maintaining
Households Receiving Federal Food Assistance Increasing
Participation in Food Assistance by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Earned Income Tax Credit Participation Maintaining
Economically Disadvantaged Students Increasing
Median Home Value Increasing
Housing Affordability for Homeowners Increasing
Housing Affordability for Renters Increasing
Homeownership Rates Maintaining
Homeownership Rates by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Homeless Persons Increasing
People Without Health Insurance Decreasing
Medical Care Expenses Increasing
Prevalence of Children with Asthma Maintaining
Prevalence of Overweight Children Decreasing
Prevalence of Overweight Adults Not Applicable
Diabetes Incidence Decreasing
Chronic Disease Among Older Adults Increasing
Cancer Incidence Decreasing
Cancer Mortality Rate Decreasing
Heart Disease Mortality Rate Decreasing
Mortality Rate Decreasing
People who Smoke Not Applicable
Use of Illegal Drugs Not Applicable
Youth Use of Illegal Drugs Not Applicable
Substance Abuse Treatment Admissions Not Applicable
Drug Overdose Mortality Rate Increasing
Prevalence of Mental Illness Maintaining
Suicide Rate Maintaining