Financial Security
Children in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity

Increasing


Children Living in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity, 2014-18

What does this measure?

The number of children under 18 living below the federally defined poverty line, expressed as a percentage of all children under 18 and reported by various racial and ethnic groups. Poverty thresholds vary by family composition and year. In 2018, the threshold for a four-person family with two children was $25,465.

Why is this important?

Children raised in impoverished environments are at higher risk for a wide variety of health and social problems, including poor performance in school. The challenges they face in childhood can diminish their chances for successful adult lives, Studies have found that the stress of living in poverty can cause biological changes in children that can lead to long-term health problems. Throughout the nation, racial disparities across many indicators of well-being (including poverty rates) are persistent, troubling and in need of attention.

How does our county compare?

Lancaster County's child poverty rate for Hispanic children was 3 percentage points lower than Pennsylvania and the same as the nation. For African-American children, the county's poverty rate was slightly higher than the state (37%) and the nation (35%). While all neighboring counties had racial and ethnic disparities in 2014-18, Chester County had some of the lowest rates of poverty in the region.

Why do these disparities exist?

Large and persistent disparities in poverty rates are the result of historic and current policies and practices that disadvantaged people of color. Research has connected slavery and the inability of black Americans even after emancipation to fully participate in economic life to the wealth and income gaps still present today. Poverty crosses generations, resulting in high rates of child poverty rates. Factors include: living in a single-parent household, especially if the single parent is female; having parent(s) who are unemployed, employed and/or underemployed in low-wage jobs or incarcerated; and living in communities that have experienced disinvestment and have ineffective and/or under-resourced schools.

Notes about the data

Child populations for most local areas, when broken down by race and ethnicity, were too small to yield reliable survey results. Poverty status is not reported for people in institutions, including college dormitories and military barracks, and people in living situations without conventional housing. The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people may show up in both a racial and ethnic group.

Children Living in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity, 2014-18
AsianBlack or African AmericanHispanicWhite
Pennsylvania14%37%37%13%
Lancaster County11%**38%33%12%
Lancaster City38%***47%*41%27%
Lancaster County Boroughs
Adamstown borough0%***0%***0%***0%***
Akron borough0%***N/A***0%***2%***
Columbia boroughN/A***35%***52%**31%*
Denver township0%***N/A***33%***18%**
East Petersburg boroughN/A***0%***0%***0%***
Elizabethtown borough0%***84%***55%***6%***
Ephrata boroughN/A***18%***7%***14%**
Lititz borough0%***0%***8%***6%***
Manheim boroughN/A***N/A***100%***10%***
Marietta boroughN/A***31%***95%***35%**
Millersville borough0%***N/A***0%***3%***
Mount Joy borough100%***0%***21%***3%***
Mountville boroughN/A***0%***100%***47%***
New Holland boroughN/A***N/A***20%***9%***
Quarryville boroughN/A***0%***79%***17%**
Strasburg borough0%***N/A***50%***20%***
Terre Hill boroughN/A***N/A***0%***4%***
Lancaster County Townships
Bart township0%***0%***0%***10%***
Brecknock township0%***N/A***0%***3%***
Caernarvon townshipN/A***N/A***0%***15%**
Clay township0%***45%***72%***11%**
Colerain townshipN/A***N/A***N/A***21%**
Conestoga townshipN/A***N/A***0%***3%***
Conoy townshipN/A***0%***84%***19%***
Drumore township0%***N/A***0%***18%***
Earl townshipN/A***0%***0%***15%**
East Cocalico townshipN/A***100%***30%***3%***
East Donegal township0%***0%***0%***10%***
East Drumore townshipN/A***N/A***0%***7%***
East Earl township0%***N/A***0%***10%***
East Hempfield township0%***0%***3%***13%**
East Lampeter township15%***33%***24%***5%***
Eden township0%***0%***0%***21%**
Elizabeth townshipN/A***N/A***N/A***8%***
Ephrata township0%***0%***0%***3%***
Fulton townshipN/A***N/A***0%***17%**
Lancaster township0%***56%***26%**11%***
Leacock township0%***N/A***0%***7%***
Little Britain townshipN/A***N/A***N/A***2%***
Manheim township5%***8%***30%***6%**
Manor township0%***0%***11%***7%***
Martic townshipN/A***N/A***N/A***10%***
Mount Joy township58%***N/A***82%***14%***
Paradise townshipN/A***0%***100%***31%*
Penn township0%***100%***54%***8%***
Pequea townshipN/A***N/A***0%***0%***
Providence townshipN/A***N/A***88%***26%***
Rapho townshipN/A***N/A***0%***0%***
Sadsbury townshipN/A***N/A***48%***12%**
Salisbury township0%***0%***0%***11%***
Strasburg townshipN/A***N/A***N/A***8%***
Upper Leacock township0%***47%***14%***21%*
Warwick township0%***0%***30%***10%**
West Cocalico townshipN/A***N/A***0%***9%***
West Donegal townshipN/A***N/A***0%***4%***
West Earl township0%***0%***0%***22%**
West Hempfield townshipN/A***N/A***24%***9%***
West Lampeter township0%***0%***4%***4%***
Berks County12%***29%40%15%
Chester County2%***31%25%7%
Cumberland County5%***38%*33%*8%
Dauphin County11%**33%41%14%
Lebanon County26%***14%***38%11%
York County13%**29%35%12%

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%. The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African-American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group.




Number of Children Living in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity, 2014-18
AsianBlack or African AmericanHispanicWhite
Pennsylvania12,583130,602114,048258,015
Lancaster County302**2,6716,31612,241
Lancaster City193***1,805*3,0131,605
Lancaster County Boroughs
Adamstown borough0***0***0***0***
Akron borough0***0***0***17***
Columbia borough0***157***329**525*
Denver township0***0***25***164**
East Petersburg borough0***0***0***0***
Elizabethtown borough0***92***34***99***
Ephrata borough0***18***31***414**
Lititz borough0***0***11***97***
Manheim borough0***0***47***95***
Marietta borough0***5***93***191**
Millersville borough0***0***0***28***
Mount Joy borough14***0***64***42***
Mountville borough0***0***68***311***
New Holland borough0***0***21***83***
Quarryville borough0***0***140***115**
Strasburg borough0***0***115***143***
Terre Hill borough0***0***0***14***
Lancaster County Townships
Bart township0***0***0***115***
Brecknock township0***0***0***45***
Caernarvon township0***0***0***216**
Clay township0***24***26***178**
Colerain township0***0***0***308**
Conestoga township0***0***0***23***
Conoy township0***0***52***139***
Drumore township0***0***0***132***
Earl township0***0***0***261**
East Cocalico township0***18***85***76***
East Donegal township0***0***0***190***
East Drumore township0***0***0***77***
East Earl township0***0***0***181***
East Hempfield township0***0***21***559**
East Lampeter township39***137***78***158***
Eden township0***0***0***144**
Elizabeth township0***0***0***80***
Ephrata township0***0***0***77***
Fulton township0***0***0***178**
Lancaster township0***312***510**239***
Leacock township0***0***0***119***
Little Britain township0***0***0***19***
Manheim township28***37***372***434**
Manor township0***0***79***267***
Martic township0***0***0***116***
Mount Joy township28***0***258***330***
Paradise township0***0***70***502*
Penn township0***40***104***142***
Pequea township0***0***0***0***
Providence township0***0***358***358***
Rapho township0***0***0***8***
Sadsbury township0***0***14***157**
Salisbury township0***0***0***374***
Strasburg township0***0***0***103***
Upper Leacock township0***26***37***487*
Warwick township0***0***129***384**
West Cocalico township0***0***0***170***
West Donegal township0***0***0***60***
West Earl township0***0***0***439**
West Hempfield township0***0***106***320***
West Lampeter township0***0***9***111***
Berks County146***1,79312,43010,398
Chester County138***2,0113,3136,370
Cumberland County123***817*977*3,380
Dauphin County284**5,2213,8154,822
Lebanon County124***126***2,5112,664
York County226**2,1724,1449,775

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%. The Census Bureau asks people to identify their race (white, African-American, etc.) separate from their ethnicity (Hispanic or non-Hispanic). So the totals for these categories cannot be added together, as people show up in both a racial and ethnic group.




INDICATORS TREND
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
Student Performance on Grade 3 English Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 3 Math Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 8 English Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 8 Math Not Applicable
Student Performance in Grade 11 English Not Applicable
Student Performance in Grade 11 Math Decreasing
Per-Student Spending Maintaining
Students Receiving Special Education Services Increasing
Rate of Foster Care Admissions Maintaining
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Disengaged Youth Maintaining
Plans of High School Graduates Not Applicable
Enrollment in Local Colleges Decreasing
College Graduation Rates Decreasing
Brain Drain/Gain Increasing
Education Levels of Adults by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Average Charitable Giving Maintaining
Voter Registration Rate Not Applicable
Voter Participation Rate Decreasing
Age of Housing Stock Not Applicable
Violent Crime Rate Maintaining
Incarceration Rate Maintaining
Incarceration Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Population Density Increasing
Air Quality Increasing
Water Use Decreasing
Waterways Impaired by Pollution Not Applicable
Population by Age Not Applicable
Change in Population by Age and Gender Not Applicable
Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People with Disabilities Increasing
Foreign-Born Population Increasing
Language Diversity Increasing
Change in Employment by Sector Not Applicable
Sector Share of Total Jobs Not Applicable
Workers by Occupation Not Applicable
Change in Labor Force Maintaining
People Entering/Leaving County/Region for Work Not Applicable
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
Change in Average Salary Since 2000 Increasing
Female to Male Earnings Ratio Maintaining
Employer Size Not Applicable
Change in Number of Businesses by Sector Increasing
Change in Total Agricultural Sales Increasing
Spending for Local Government Maintaining
Spending for School Districts Maintaining
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Veterans Living in Poverty Decreasing
Working Poor Maintaining
Median Household Income by Household Type Not Applicable
Median Household Income, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Living Wage Not Applicable
Unemployment Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Households Receiving SNAP by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Household Receiving Temporary Assistance Increasing
Students Eligible for Free/Reduced Price Lunch Increasing
Median Home Value Maintaining
Occupied Housing Units Decreasing
Homeownership Rate, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Homeownership by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Median Rent Maintaining
Cost of Renting Increasing
Households Without Vehicles Maintaining
Means of Transportation to Work, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Without Health Insurance Decreasing
Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Health Status Maintaining
Prevalence of Mental Illness Maintaining
Adults Who are Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Mortality Rates Decreasing
Fatal Drug Overdoses Increasing
Cancer Incidence Decreasing
Households With Internet Access Not Applicable
High-Tech Jobs Increasing
STEM Graduates Increasing
Science and Engineering Research and Development Maintaining
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Incarceration Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children in Poverty by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Median Household Income, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Unemployment Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Households Receiving SNAP by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Homeownership Rate, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Homeownership by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable


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