Suburban poverty outpaces urban plight

    Fallout from the global recession is increasingly hitting the suburbs.

    Fallout from the global recession is increasingly hitting the suburbs. That’s according to a report released today by the Brookings Institution, a Washington think tank. [audio: 100120SBPOVERTY.mp3]

    The poverty rate in the suburbs has increased less than one percent since 2000.  But considering how the region has grown during that time, the change reflects a big increase in overall poverty.  There are now about 314 thousand poor people in the suburbs, up about 50,000 in the last ten years.

    Elizabeth Kneebone is a Senior Research Analyst at Brookings.  She says the added poor are mostly lifelong suburbanites who have fallen on hard times.

    The total number of poor stayed the same in Philadelphia, so even if there was some out migration from the city to the suburbs, perhaps following jobs or housing options, that’s still not enough to account for the change that we’re seeing here in the suburbs.

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    Although the number of poor hasn’t increased in the past 10 years, a loss in the city’s population has caused the poverty rate to increase about 1 percent.

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