The Persisting Gender Gap in Poverty Rates in the United States

The U.S. Census Bureau has released its annual report on poverty in the United States. The data shows that in 2019, 11.5 percent of all women and girls in the United States lived in poverty. For all males, the poverty rate was 9.4 percent. The good news is that the poverty rate for women and girls dropped from 16.3 percent in 2012 to 11.5 percent in 2019 However, the gender gap persists.

For those under the age of 18, girls are only slightly more likely to be in poverty than males of that age group. But the gender gap in poverty rates grows as women get older.

In 2019, only 4 percent of married-couple families lived in poverty. For families headed by a single man, 11.5 percent of all families were poor. But for families headed by a single woman, 22.2 percent of all families were poor.

Obviously, these women living in poverty have major disadvantages in access to higher education, a path that might provide them a way out of poverty.

Filed Under: Research/Study

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