Stanford releases new poverty index for California

Oct 02, 2013 by Dan Stober
Stanford research on poverty reveals that 25 percent of California's children are poverty-stricken.

The sky-high cost of housing in California is pushing many families into poverty, according to new research by Stanford's Center on Poverty and Inequality and the Public Policy Institute of California.

The harsh reality of high rents and mortgage payments are felt most severely in metro areas such as Los Angeles, a finding that came out of a new index of poverty in California.

The index provides a more rigorous measure than the commonly used official poverty measure of the U.S. Census Bureau.

The new California Poverty Measure improves on the official measure by taking housing costs and transfer payments into account, said David Grusky, a sociology professor who serves as the director of Stanford's Center on Poverty and Inequality.

Under the new measure, 22 percent of Californians live in poverty, and that figure would be even higher if not for the state and federal safety nets, including CalFresh, the state's food stamp program; CalWORKs, the state's cash assistance program; and the federal Earned Income Tax Credit.

If these programs were not in place, the child poverty rate would increase by another 12 percentage points, raising it from nearly 25 percent to nearly 37 percent of all children.

"Much as we'd like a yet better safety net, we have to appreciate that the safety net we have is doing real work, pulling millions of Californians out of poverty," said researcher Beth Mattingly, who worked with the Stanford team.

The new index also provides statistics at the county level, giving local officials a better understanding of how much poverty there is and how the safety net is reducing it. "Local and state officials shouldn't have to fly blind when it comes to understanding the extent of poverty and whether our safety net is doing the work it's supposed to be doing," Grusky said.

Grusky noted some of the findings of the research based on the new California Poverty Measure:

  • Housing is cheaper in rural areas, lowering there.
  • Out-of-pocket medical costs, which the Census Bureau doesn't take into consideration when calculating the official , often push the elderly into poverty.
  • Nearly 30 percent of the state's immigrant population lives in poverty, a figure that is much higher than official government estimates, in part because undocumented immigrants are not eligible for safety net programs. "If we want to take on poverty in California, we simply can't continue to ignore the situation of immigrants," Grusky said.
  • Twenty-five percent of the state's children are poverty-stricken. They tend to live in urban areas, where rents are high. In overall numbers, more poor children live in California than in any other state.

The research helps to establish that California, often thought of as the land of plenty, is "in fact the land of poverty," Grusky said. It also shows, he said, that those who "want to cut back the food stamp program have to own up to the -increasing effects of that change."

"We developed the California Poverty Measure because we can't have a meaningful policy debate in this state without knowing how proposed changes in policy will affect the lives of real Californians," he said.

Explore further: Digital native fallacy: Teachers still know better when it comes to using technology

More information: inequality.com/poverty/cpm

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User comments : 13

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rwinners
2.3 / 5 (3) Oct 02, 2013
Not fixable. The people who own the oceanside own the state. Good luck to the rest of them.
JohnGee
2.2 / 5 (10) Oct 02, 2013
Reagan's policies destroyed California decades ago.
VendicarE
3 / 5 (8) Oct 03, 2013
Poverty and corruption is what you get when you vote Republican. The party of Treason.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (11) Oct 03, 2013
The harsh reality of high rents and mortgage payments are felt most severely in metro areas such as Los Angeles,

And even more so in the socialist Bay Area.
Fortunately Gov. Moonbeam who started the decline of CA is in charge to finish the job.
JohnGee
2.2 / 5 (10) Oct 03, 2013
Rygg, Reagan is dead. He can't hold any political office.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (8) Oct 03, 2013
"Real estate prices are skyrocketing in Silicon Valley, and in San Francisco, up 24% in the fourth quarter of 2012 in the Bay Area, "
http://online.wsj...pStories

"For the uninitiated, 'Governor Moonbeam' became Mr. Brown's intractable sobriquet, dating back to his days as governor between 1975 and 1983, when his state led the nation in pretty much everything — its economy, environmental awareness and, yes, class-A eccentrics. "
http://www.nytime...tml?_r=0

"But Take-Two is neither the first nor the last business to find Nevada more attractive than tax-hungry, tax-hiking California. Apple is building a data and purchasing center near Sparks and Reno, according to the same report. "
http://www.forbes...s-again/
TheGhostofOtto1923
2 / 5 (4) Oct 03, 2013
California has had to ingest a larger number of undocumented refugees than any other state.
http://immigratio...tate.php

-They are suffering a fate similar to greece, spain, and italy. This the direct result of religion-fueled overgrowth in the regions these refugees come from.
ryggesogn2
1.4 / 5 (9) Oct 03, 2013
"Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill adding California to a growing list of states that will grant driver licenses to immigrants in the country illegally."
http://www.breitb...licenses
VendicarE
2.3 / 5 (3) Oct 03, 2013
"Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill" - UbVonTard

From UbVonTard's own link.

"State officials estimate 1.4 million drivers will apply for licenses under the law, which was supported by the state's Police Chiefs Association and insurance authorities."

UbVonTard is apparently opposed to some kinds of freedom... Like freedom of movement.

Typical Tea-Publican hypocrite filth.

VendicarE
2.3 / 5 (3) Oct 03, 2013
"Real estate prices are skyrocketing in Silicon Valley, and in San Francisco, up 24% in the fourth quarter of 2012 in the Bay Area," - RyggTard

Good news for the U.S. housing market and the U.S. economy in general.

Now if only the Idiot Tea-bagger Reublicans would stop trying to force the U.S. economy into a Grand Economic Depression.
kochevnik
1.8 / 5 (4) Oct 04, 2013
Americans and Californian governments in general are idiots because they beg for funds from the private economy instead of making public banks. Public banks thrive in a recession and allow savers to safely keep their funds. If the bank makes a profit the general fund is credited and people experience lower taxes! In private US banks you do not own your funds. They are simply a credit given to the bank and in case of bank failure you become a shareholder. Meanwhile the derivatives players are ahead of you in the payment line!

Case example the Oakland Bay bridge was built for $4billion and an equal $4billion was given to some commercial bank, draining San Francisco of funds. With a public bank the city would still have $4billion in the city
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (5) Oct 07, 2013
BHO voters get what they deserve:
"Cindy Vinson and Tom Waschura are big believers in the Affordable Care Act. They vote independent and are proud to say they helped elect and re-elect President Barack Obama.

Yet, like many other Bay Area residents who pay for their own medical insurance, they were floored last week when they opened their bills: Their policies were being replaced with pricier plans that conform to all the requirements of the new health care law.

Vinson, of San Jose, will pay $1,800 more a year for an individual policy, while Waschura, of Portola Valley, will cough up almost $10,000 more for insurance for his family of four.'
http://www.mercur...bay-area
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (5) Oct 07, 2013
Americans and Californian governments in general are idiots because they beg for funds from the private economy instead of making public banks. Public banks thrive in a recession and allow savers to safely keep their funds. If the bank makes a profit the general fund is credited and people experience lower taxes! In private US banks you do not own your funds. They are simply a credit given to the bank and in case of bank failure you become a shareholder. Meanwhile the derivatives players are ahead of you in the payment line!

Case example the Oakland Bay bridge was built for $4billion and an equal $4billion was given to some commercial bank, draining San Francisco of funds. With a public bank the city would still have $4billion in the city

What good is a govt bank if the currency is worthless?