Definitions: The share of own children under age 18 living in families that met two criteria: (1) the family income was less than twice the federal poverty level; (2) at least one parent worked 50 or more weeks during the previous year.
We use the "200 percent of poverty" threshold for this measure because
it is a cutoff point commonly used to identify low-income families. For
example, the U.S. Census Bureau uses 200 percent of poverty as a key
threshold in their annual poverty reports, and the Urban Institute uses
this level in many of their New Federalism reports. Furthermore, people
with family incomes between 100 and 200 percent of poverty are eligible
for many government means-tested assistance programs--for example the
Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), many of the state Child Health
Insurance Programs (sCHIP), and food stamps.
Researchers have used a wide range of employment thresholds to identify
low-income working families--from any work during the year to full-time,
year-round employment. Some have actually combined the hours worked by
all adults in the household to determine work effort. We use 50 weeks of
work to identify working families. This includes people who worked
part-time as well as those who worked full-time. However the vast
majority of people who worked at least 50 weeks during the year worked
full-time (i.e., 35 hours or more a week).
Data Source: Population Reference Bureau, analysis of data from the U.S. Census Bureau, Census 2000 Supplementary Survey, 2001 Supplementary Survey, 2002 through 2007 American Community Survey.
The data for this measure come from the 2000 and 2001 Supplementary
Survey and the 2002 through 2007 American Community Survey (ACS). The
2000 through 2004 ACS surveyed approximately 700,000 households monthly
during each calendar year. In general but particularly for these years,
use caution when interpreting estimates for less populous states or
indicators representing a small sub-population, where the sample size is
relatively small. Beginning in January 2005, the U.S. Census Bureau
expanded the ACS sample to 3 million households (full implementation),
and in January 2006 the ACS included group quarters. The ACS, fully
implemented, is designed to provide annually updated social, economic,
and housing data for states and communities. (Such local-area data have
traditionally been collected once every ten years in the long form of
the decennial census.)
S - Estimates suppressed when the confidence interval around the
percentage is greater than or equal to 10 percentage points. N.A. – Data
Data are provided for the 50 most populous cities according to the most
recent Census counts. Cities for which data is collected may change
A 90 percent confidence interval for each estimate can be found at
Children in low-income working families by age group.
Note: The District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands are
not included in maps and rankings because they are not states and therefore comparisons on many
indicators of child well being are not meaningful.