New poverty, income and health insurance numbers are out! In September, the US Census Bureau released results from the American Community Survey's 1-year estimates. The news was mixed. Poverty dropped slightly but is still elevated compared to the years before the recession (which were elevated compared to the early 2000s). Median household income is flat and has yet to regain pre-recession levels.
Both poverty and income are skewed along racial lines. African Americans and American Indians experience poverty at a rate double that of whites and Asians. Median household income for black households is about 64% of white households' income and less than half of Asians'.Poverty and income vary wildly between places. Union County's poverty rate is 10.8%; Robeson County's is 32.5. Greenville's poverty rate is more than four times Cary's. (The one-year estimates look only at larger geographic places; places under 65,000 are included only in the five-year estimates.)
While a number of indicators show that NC residents are slowly shaking off the effects of the recession, the brightest piece of news is about health insurance. The number of uninsured people in the US and NC dropped steeply from last year, likely due to the ACA.