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Poverty In Suburbs Increasing Rapidly During Economic Downturn   Leave a comment

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Poverty In Suburbs Increasing Rapidly During Economic Downturn.

via Poverty In Suburbs Increasing Rapidly During Economic Downturn.

The American suburb is no longer a refuge from poverty in cities.

A pair of analyses by the nonprofit Brookings Institution paints a bleak economic picture for the 100 largest metropolitan areas over the past decade and in coming years, and finds that suburbs now are home to one-third of the nation’s poor, and rising.

The study of census data finds that since 2000, the number of poor people in the suburbs jumped by 37.4 percent to 13.7 million. The growth rate of suburban poverty is more than double that of cities and higher than the national rate of 26.5 percent.

At the same time, social service providers are spread thin in many suburban areas, according to a detailed Brookings survey of groups in representative metropolitan areas of Chicago, Los Angeles and the District of Columbia. That has forced providers to turn away many poor people due to scarce aid that typically goes to cities first.

“Millions of Americans at all income levels moved to the suburbs looking for better schools, better jobs, affordable housing, and a sense of security, but in recent years, as incomes have fallen, people had a harder and harder time making ends meet,” said Scott Allard, a University of Chicago professor who co-wrote one of the reports.

“As a result, Americans who never imagined becoming poor are now asking for assistance, and many are not getting the help they need.”

After the recession began in 2007, the suburbs continued to post larger increases in the number of poor – adding 1.8 million, compared with 1.4 million in the cities.