Children in deep poverty (<50% poverty threshold) by county in Massachusetts

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Why This Indicator Matters

When wages are low and incomes aren’t enough to afford the basics, children face significant obstacles to opportunity right from the start. In some communities in Massachusetts, more than one out of every four children lives below the official federal poverty line. These children are more likely to be at risk for many long-term challenges which can have impacts on their overall development as well as physical and mental health. See MassBudget’s report, Obstacles on the Road to Opportunity: Finding a Way Forward.

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Data Provided By


Number – Number of children under 18 under 50% of the federal poverty level.

Percent – Percent of children under 50% of the federal poverty level.

S – Data suppressed: estimate has low statistical reliability due to small sample size and is more likely to be inaccurate.

Poverty status defined by family: either everyone in the family is in poverty or no one in the family is in poverty. Family income is then compared to the Census Bureau’s poverty threshold.

Data Source:

U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B17024. Updated July 2020 with 2014-2018 data.


These are estimates based on an annual survey, and they may be somewhat unreliable in counties with smaller populations due to smaller sample sizes. Estimates for counties with especially high margins of error have been suppressed.

When comparing estimates over time, researchers recommend comparing time periods that do not include overlapping years.