mybudget360.com / Oct 22, 2016
We tend to think of the suburbs as middle class utopias. When people think of the American Dream they usually draw up a picture of a home with a picket white fence in the suburb. Poverty is usually left to inner cities and crammed multi-family dwellings. So it might come as a surprise that over the last decade the fastest growing segment of poverty occurred in the suburbs. It occurred in this market as people were driven out of city centers where prices surged and people were driven further outside of the city. In the past, this push out was usually done by choice for quality of life and family purposes. This time, it has happened by economic force and poverty in the suburbs is exploding. This goes hand in hand with the shrinking middle class.
The suburban poverty sprawl
There is some troubling data showing the poverty epidemic hitting the suburbs:
“(Report) Between 2000 and 2011, the number of people living in poverty in the U.S. grew from 33.9 million to a record 46.2 million. Increasing poverty touched all kinds of communities during the 2000s, but poverty grew fastest in the suburbs. Between 2000 and 2011, the number of poor residents in the suburbs of the nation’s largest metropolitan areas grew by 64 percent—more than twice the growth rate in cities. For the first time, suburbs became home to more poor residents than America’s big cities. Today, one in three poor Americans—about 16.4 million people—lives in the suburbs.”