New analysis of Census Bureau data: New data shows economic growth has made little progress for working families
New data released today shows economic growth has made little progress for working families
It has been four years since the national recession that started and ended in 2001. New data from the Census Bureau gives us an opportunity to compare today's Washington State economy with that of 2000, before the recession.
Unfortunately, economic growth has done little to improve the lives of low and moderate income Washingtonians. 2005 was the first year the state had more jobs than in 2000. The unemployment rate has gone from 5.0 percent to 5.5 percent. The poverty rate has remained essentially unchanged, as has the share of people without health insurance. Median household income has risen at only an average of 1 percent per year.
New Census data show great disparities within state by race
Communities of color in Washington State face much higher rates of poverty than white, non-Hispanic Washingtonians. While the white, non-Hispanic poverty rate is 9.6 percent, nearly 21 percent (20.8) of African-Americans in Washington State are below the poverty rate. Nearly one in every four Hispanics in Washington State is below the poverty line. Thirty percent (30.3) of American Indians in Washington State are below the poverty line.
Some data are available at the local level:
- in Seattle, 22.8 percent of African-Americans were below the poverty line;
- In Tacoma, 33.7 percent of African-Americans were below the poverty line; and
- In Yakima 31.9 percent of Hispanics and 17.9 percent of white, non-Hispanics are below the poverty line.
More analysis will be available from the Washington State Budget & Policy Center as it becomes available. Research Direction Jeff Chapman will be available at 206.625.9790*27 or email@example.com.