People in poverty in Hawaii

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Why This Indicator Matters

Poverty can have multiple and long-lasting negative effects on individuals. Negative outcomes include poor nutrition, poor physical and mental health, low educational achievement and attainment, and lack of adequate housing to name a few.1 The effects of poverty can build over time, with consequences at one stage impeding progress at a later stage. When children experience poverty in early childhood, or when poverty persists over an extended period of time, the consequences can be long-lasting.2

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Data Provided By

Definitions: Percent of the total population living below the federal poverty level.

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates Program, Model-based small area income and poverty estimates for school districts, counties, and states, various years.

Technical Note:
Several data sources are used in producing the Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates (SAIPE) program estimates. Information on data inputs can be found at For states and counties, comparisons between modeled estimates for two different years, in the 2006-2020 time period are possible for poverty rate of the all-age population. Poverty estimates from SAIPE should not be compared with other poverty indicators based on data from the American Community Survey 5-year estimates.


1Engle, Patrice L. and Maureen M. Black. 2008. “The Effect of Poverty on Child Development and Educational Outcomes.” Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1136(1): 243-256.; Ratcliffe, Caroline and Signe-Mary McKerman. 2012. “Child Poverty and Its Lasting Consequences.” Washington D.C.: The Urban Institute.  
2 Brooks-Gunn, Jeanne and Greg J. Duncan. 1997. “The Effects of Poverty on Children.” The Future of Children 7(2).