Income distribution, inequality and poverty

State of Working New York 2001: Working Harder, Growing Apart

September 2, 2001. The decade of boom was a bust for most New York workers and their families. Although the state’s economy grew, average New York families’ living standards are lower than in 1989, despite working more hours to make ends meet. Press release below.

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Hardships: The Real Story of Working Families

July 24, 2001. A new national study confirms that New York families need incomes well above “poverty level” to make ends meet. Fully 37.5% of New York families with young children do not earn enough to afford basic necessities. In a press release (below), FPI compares the results of a new national study by Economic Policy Institute, Hardships in America: The Real Story of Working Families, to The Self Sufficiency Standard for New York released last fall.

Also see … (read more)

The Self Sufficiency Standard for New York: How Much Do New Yorkers Really Need to Make Ends Meet?

September 13, 2000. Today, the members of the New York State Self-Sufficiency Standard Steering Committee released the Self Sufficiency Standard for New York report in Albany. The report is authored by Dr. Diana Pearce who currently teaches at the School of Social Work at the University of Washington, Seattle. Dr. Pearce has developed these Standards for 12 other states.

Full report here, county-by county standards here. Executive summary, press release and committee members below. Also see the article … (read more)

Family Needs Far Exceed the Official Poverty Line

September 13, 2000. An article in the New York Times by Nina Bernstein, focusing on a new report on what families really face in terms of basic expenses – The Self Sufficiency Standard for New York.

Carol Williams did not need an economic study to prove that her $24,000-a-year job as an administrative assistant could not support three children in New York, even when squeezed into a one-bedroom, $600-a-month apartment in the Bronx.

“By the time I paid my … (read more)

County-by-County Self-Sufficiency Standards

September 13, 2000. Click on the county or metropolitan area you are interested in to download an Excel file with the estimates of the Self-Sufficiency Standard for 70 specific family types.

Metropolitan Areas Albany-Schenectady-Troy, NY MSA Albany County Montgomery County Renesselaer County Schenectady County Schoharie County 

Binghamton, NY MSA Broome County Tioga County

Buffalo-Niagara Falls, NY PMSA Erie County Niagara

Dutchess County, NY PMSA Dutchess County

Elmira, NY MSA Chemung County

Glens Falls, NY MSA Warren County Washington County

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Broad Attacks Needed on Income Gaps

February 1, 2000. An op ed by FPI’s Trudi Renwick, in Newsday.

A new study by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and the Economic Policy Institute reports that New York has the most unequal income distribution of the 50 states. Concerted action by both the public and private sectors is needed to reverse this imbalance.

The average income of the top 20 percent of New York families is 14 times as large as the average income of … (read more)

Pulling Apart in New York: Most New Yorkers Not Sharing in the Current Boom Times

January 18, 2000. New York State and New York City have always had much to brag about. There is, however, at least one major national trend in which New York’s preeminence is more of a danger sign than a blessing. This involves the widening gap that exists between the economic well-being of people at the top of the socioeconomic ladder and those below them on that ladder. New national and state reports show income inequality in New York is the … (read more)

New York’s Poverty Rate Remains High While the National Poverty Rate Continues to Fall

September 30, 1999. Press release:

The new poverty statistics released today by the United States Census Bureau show that  New York’s poverty rate remained high while the national poverty rate continues to fall. The national poverty rate declined for the fifth consecutive year. This year’s decline was particularly large, from 13.3% to 12.7%. At the same time, however, New York’s poverty rate showed no improvement. Actually New York’s poverty rate increased from 16.5% in 1997 to 16.7% in 1998 but … (read more)

State of Working New York 1999: The Illusion of Prosperity

September 1, 1999. Prosperity bypasses most New Yorkers. Wages fall, the upstate economy falters, and the ranks of the working poor rise over the 1990s. Press release below.

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Living Standards in New York City: The Foundation of Quality of Life

April 15, 1999. City Project used this brief (available in pdf) for its Alterbudget agenda.

Living Standards in New York City – The Foundation of Quality of Life

Any discussion of quality of life in New York City needs to consider what is happening to living standards. Indeed, a decent income that provides for basic human material needs – shelter, food, medical care, clothing, etc. – should be the starting point for gauging a community’s “quality of life”. In … (read more)