Homeless 1

Homelessness/ Poverty Fact Sheet

  • The three most cited reasons for family homelessness are:

1) Lack of affordable housing,

2) unemployment, and

3) poverty.

  • 2.5 million children will experience homelessness this year in America.
  • 1 in 30 children in the United States experience homelessness annually.
  • Nearly 1.4 million school children were homeless in school year 2016-17.
  • Students experiencing homelessness are up to nine times more likely than their non-homeless peers to repeat a grade.
  • 51% of homeless children are under age 6 and, therefore, too young for school and are not counted.
  • 35% of all homeless persons nationwide are families with children.
  • Homeless families are often hidden from our view—they are living in shelters, cars, campgrounds, or doubled up in overcrowded apartments.
  • Nearly 40 million people (1 in 8) in the U.S. live below the poverty line.
  • More than 1 in 5 (15 million) U.S. children under age 18 live in poverty.
  • In 2000, 12 million U.S. children (17%) lived in poverty.  That number had grown to nearly 14 million children (19%) by 2008 and to 15 million children (21%) by 2018.
  • In 2018, the poverty line for a family of four is $25,750.
  • The federal minimum wage is $7.25/hour.  It has not been raised since 2009.
  • A worker needs to earn $12.38/hour to reach the poverty level for a family of four.
  • A renter needs to earn $22.96/hour to afford a two-bedroom rental in the U.S.
  • In only 28 counties in the country (out of 3,007) can a worker making the federal minimum wage afford a Fair Market Rent one-bedroom apartment.
  • 11 million households now pay more than 50% of their income for housing–an increase of 4.3 million households since 2001.
  • Only 25% of those considered eligible for federal housing assistance receive help, due to lack of funding.
  • For every 100 extremely low-income households, there are only 37 affordable rentals available on the market.
  • The U.S. has a shortage of more than 7.2 million rental homes affordable and available to extremely low-income rental households.
  • In America, nearly 13 million children live in food-insecure households (where they may not have consistent access to enough food for an active, healthy life).