Children and Families
Children Living in Poverty

Maintaining


Children Living in Poverty

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. Poverty thresholds vary by family composition and year. In 2022, the threshold for a four-person family with two children was $29,678.

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.

How is the region doing?

In 2018-22, about 52,600 children in MetroWest were living in poverty, or 8% of all children under 18. This was down slightly from 10% in 2013-17. The region's rate was lower than the state as a whole (12%), and well below the national rate of 17%.

Worcester County had the highest child poverty rate (12%) in 2018-22, followed by Middlesex (7%) and Norfolk (6%). Framingham (15%) and Marlborough (9%) had rates significantly higher than most of the rest of the region. Sample sizes for most other communities in the region were too small to report reliably. For comparison, the 2018-22 child poverty rate in Boston was 22%.

Notes about the data

Poverty status is not reported for people in institutions, including college dormitories and military barracks, and people in living situations without conventional housing.

The multiyear figures are from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey. The bureau combined 5 years of responses to the survey to provide estimates for smaller geographic areas and increase the precision of its estimates. However, because the information came from a survey, the samples responding to the survey were not always large enough to produce reliable results, especially in small geographic areas. CGR has noted on data tables the estimates with relatively large margins of error. Estimates with 3 asterisks have the largest margins, plus or minus 50% or more of the estimate. Two asterisks mean plus or minus 35%-50%, and one asterisk means plus or minus 20%-35%. For all estimates, the confidence level is 90%, meaning there is 90% probability the true value (if the whole population were surveyed) would be within the margin of error (or confidence interval). The survey provides data on characteristics of the population that used to be collected only during the decennial census. Data for this indicator are released annually in December.

Children Living in Poverty
20002008-122013-172018-22
United States17%21%20%17%
Massachusetts12%14%15%12%
Region8%9%10%8%
Middlesex County8%8%9%7%
Norfolk County5%7%7%6%
Worcester County12%14%14%12%
Acton town, Middlesex County2%3%***1%***2%***
Ashland town, Middlesex County2%3%***3%***2%***
Bedford town, Middlesex County3%8%***1%***4%***
Bellingham town, Norfolk County3%6%***6%***6%***
Boxborough town, Middlesex County4%5%***5%***4%***
Carlisle town, Middlesex County3%7%***1%***3%***
Concord town, Middlesex County4%7%**6%***2%***
Dedham town, Norfolk County4%7%**5%**3%***
Dover town, Norfolk County3%2%***0%***0%***
Framingham city, Middlesex County12%14%16%15%*
Franklin town, Norfolk County4%***4%**4%***
Groton town, Middlesex County4%2%***1%***3%***
Harvard town, Worcester County1%8%***5%***2%***
Holliston town, Middlesex County3%6%***0%***2%***
Hopkinton town, Middlesex County2%2%***1%***4%***
Hudson town, Middlesex County4%4%***8%**4%***
Lexington town, Middlesex County3%3%***3%***4%**
Lincoln town, Middlesex County0%4%***2%***8%***
Littleton town, Middlesex County2%3%***4%***6%***
Marlborough city, Middlesex County9%9%*7%**9%*
Maynard town, Middlesex County7%0%***10%***11%***
Medfield town, Norfolk County1%5%***2%***2%***
Medway town, Norfolk County2%1%***6%***2%***
Milford town, Worcester County9%16%*10%*18%**
Millis town, Norfolk County3%7%***4%***6%***
Natick town, Middlesex County3%3%**3%**3%***
Needham town, Norfolk County1%3%***1%***2%***
Sherborn town, Middlesex County2%2%***7%***2%***
Southborough town, Worcester County1%0%***4%***2%***
Stow town, Middlesex County2%1%***5%***6%***
Sudbury town, Middlesex County4%1%***4%***1%***
Walpole town, Norfolk County2%6%***2%***5%**
Waltham city, Middlesex County5%12%*11%*9%**
Wayland town, Middlesex County2%2%***2%***4%***
Wellesley town, Norfolk County4%3%***5%*3%***
Westborough town, Worcester County4%3%***5%**4%***
Westford town, Middlesex County2%2%***2%***1%***
Weston town, Middlesex County2%0%***6%***7%***
Westwood town, Norfolk County2%2%***2%***3%***

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%.




Number of Children Living in Poverty
20002008-122013-172018-22
United States11,711,49115,188,84414,710,48512,002,351
Massachusetts177,383195,519198,980158,194
Region53,64861,65864,15152,633
Middlesex County24,37826,35129,45323,474
Norfolk County6,89010,3689,8748,416
Worcester County22,38024,93924,82420,743
Acton town, Middlesex County146196***55***95***
Ashland town, Middlesex County85137***114***80***
Bedford town, Middlesex County102264***34***138***
Bellingham town, Norfolk County118204***209***223***
Boxborough town, Middlesex County5661***57***48***
Carlisle town, Middlesex County3774***6***46***
Concord town, Middlesex County168296**259***76***
Dedham town, Norfolk County208345**232**130***
Dover town, Norfolk County4837***0***0***
Framingham city, Middlesex County1,6342,0472,2672,221*
Franklin town, Norfolk County320***375**243***
Groton town, Middlesex County12749***37***77***
Harvard town, Worcester County13116***68***30***
Holliston town, Middlesex County120238***0***63***
Hopkinton town, Middlesex County6980***54***183***
Hudson town, Middlesex County162183***299**182***
Lexington town, Middlesex County266218***229***310**
Lincoln town, Middlesex County588***41***160***
Littleton town, Middlesex County4258***83***132***
Marlborough city, Middlesex County739676*564**740*
Maynard town, Middlesex County1800***217***253***
Medfield town, Norfolk County47163***58***90***
Medway town, Norfolk County6720***200***60***
Milford town, Worcester County6171,064*662*1,087**
Millis town, Norfolk County59126***63***111***
Natick town, Middlesex County186254**286**206***
Needham town, Norfolk County100269***101***147***
Sherborn town, Middlesex County3221***91***21***
Southborough town, Worcester County1910***109***47***
Stow town, Middlesex County2614***95***113***
Sudbury town, Middlesex County22058***247***33***
Walpole town, Norfolk County127330***138***342**
Waltham city, Middlesex County494987*983*782**
Wayland town, Middlesex County6855***86***134***
Wellesley town, Norfolk County267238***387*219***
Westborough town, Worcester County192132***247**191***
Westford town, Middlesex County160106***160***55***
Weston town, Middlesex County668***184***201***
Westwood town, Norfolk County79101***102***109***

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%.




INDICATORS REGIONAL TREND
Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty Maintaining
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families Increasing
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Disengaged Youth Decreasing
Reports of Domestic Violence Increasing
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Increasing
Households Without Vehicles Maintaining
Means of Transportation to Work Not Applicable
Households With Internet Access Not Applicable
Voter Participation Rate Increasing
Average Charitable Contribution Maintaining
People Without Health Insurance Decreasing
Drug Poisoning Mortality Rate Increasing
Crimes Against People Decreasing
Incarceration Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Total Population Increasing
Change in Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Foreign-Born Population Increasing
Language Diversity Increasing
Population by Age Not Applicable
Change in Population by Age/Gender Not Applicable
Seniors Living Alone Decreasing
People with Disabilities Maintaining
Change in Total Jobs by Sector Not Applicable
Business Ownership by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Unemployment Rate Increasing
Share of Workers who are Professionals, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Unemployment Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
High-Tech Jobs Maintaining
Female to Male Earnings Ratio Maintaining
Prekindergarten Participation Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 3 English, by Student Group Not Applicable
School Spending Per Student Maintaining
Student Performance on Grade 8 Math by Student Group Not Applicable
Chronically Absent Students Increasing
High School Cohort Graduation Rate by Student Group Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults Not Applicable
College Admission Rate, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
People Living in Poverty, by Education Level Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Households Receiving Temporary Assistance Maintaining
Participation in Food Assistance by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Median Household Income Maintaining
Median Household Income, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Living Wage Not Applicable
80/20 Income Ratio Maintaining
Access to Financial Services, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates Increasing
Homeownership Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Homeownership Increasing
Cost of Homeownership, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Rent Not Applicable
Cost of Rent, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Homelessness Increasing
Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Incarceration Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Business Ownership by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Share of Workers who are Professionals, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Unemployment Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 3 English, by Student Group Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 8 Math by Student Group Not Applicable
High School Cohort Graduation Rate by Student Group Not Applicable
College Admission Rate, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Participation in Food Assistance by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Median Household Income, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Access to Financial Services, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Homeownership, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Rent, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable


Loading...