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Census numbers out today show poverty is growing in Monroe County. The poverty rate jumped more than a full percentage point between 2010 and 2011.

Take a look at the poverty rate in Monroe County:

  • 2008: 13.1%
  • 2010: 15.4%
  • 2011: 16.7%

The City of Rochester is worse off:

  • 2008: 29.3%
  • 2010: 33.8%
  • 2011: 35.5%

There are more children in poverty in our community. From 2010 to 2011, the rate  of children under 18 who lived in poverty in Monroe County jumped from 22.2 percent to 24.8 percent. In the City of Rochester, the rate went from 51.1 percent to 53.9 percent. That means one out of four children in Monroe County and fully half the children in the city live in impoverished households.

Household income in Monroe County has dropped over the last few years, but is making tiny gains:

  • 2008: $51,762
  • 2010: $49,532
  • 2011: $50,204

Brookings ranked Rochester 76th out of 100 metros in economic recovery for the third quarter of 2012.

These numbers are terribly troubling.

Links of the Day:

– Our nation’s school system is incredibly segregated by race and income.

– Trader Joe’s is very secretive about where it gets its products.

– Albany guys out for pizza found themselves interrogated by police about missile launchers.

– There’s a Roc City restaurant in Florida serving garbage plates.

10 Responses to Poverty Jumps in Monroe County

  1. September 20, 2012 at 9:09 am Bill Stratton responds:

    What about changes in the “wealth level” at the other end of the spectrum? If it has decreased, I too am troubled by the increase in the poverty level. But if the “wealth level” has stayed the same or increased as the poverty level has increased, then I am even more troubled. The increase in the gap between the two breeds further division in our community.

    • September 20, 2012 at 9:39 am Rachel Barnhart responds:

      The New York Times reported the rich got richer and the poor got poorer. While I haven’t looked at those numbers yet. However, the percentage of households earning more than $200,000 actually fell slightly in Monroe.

  2. I suspect the child poverty rate in Rochester is even greater. Poverty is seen in the suburbs too. Rural poverty is a problem that gets very little attention. Interesting in the NYT article that Latinos are more segregated in NY, Texas and CA. There are more concentrated populations for sure but schools also might have greater concentrations of Latinos because of bilingual education. Bilingual and Dual education classrooms are superior to English only programs and provide better English language learning. That is not harmful segregation but a necessity for access to language appropriate content and learning.

  3. September 20, 2012 at 4:35 pm Edward Richards responds:

    The saying “the rich get richer and the poor get poorer” is REAL. And quite scary. It all boils down to rich people are so scared of being poor, they will ANYTHING and everything in their power (stock ownership) to maintain it. Basically, the fear (and shame) of being poor is what people with money avoid like the plague. For example, how many well off/rich people live in Cities?


  4. September 20, 2012 at 4:46 pm Edward Richards responds:

    As commodities and cost of living increase, we need to wage and fight the new war – the War on Poverty. It shouldn’t be suprising poverty is in Pittsford, Canadaigua, Webster or Churchville. It’s anywhere and everywhere. To escape being a casulty, we need to properly educate people to avoid pitfalls in life – alcohol, tobacco, and gambling. The City recently just voted about this (corner stores).

  5. Rachel, how do the numbers correlate with out-of-wedlock births? Last I saw, 78% of black and 71% of hispanic households in the city of Rochester were single parent. That makes economic progress virtually impossible and makes poverty nearly a 50/50 proposition.


    An increase in assortive mating is another factor. You rarely see somebody in the upper class marry down and take a husband or wife from the lower class in this day and age. Plus, marriage in general has become more prominent for upper and middle classes than the lower class.

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