Silicon Valley boom eludes many, drives income gap

Mar 06, 2014 by Martha Mendoza
People line up at the food pantry at Sacred Heart Community Service on Friday, Feb. 21, 2014, in San Jose, Calif. Silicon Valley is entering it's fifth year of unfettered growth, with among the highest incomes in the U.S. and the largest share of high-growth, high-wage jobs. Those gains have doubled housing costs in the past five years while wages for low and middle skilled workers are stagnant. Homelessness and racial disparities are on the rise. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

(AP)—Silicon Valley is entering a fifth year of unfettered growth. The median household income is $90,000. The average single-family home sells for about $1 million. The airport is adding a multimillion-dollar private jet center.

But the river of money flowing through America's tech mecca has also driven to double while wages for low- and middle-skilled workers are stagnant. Now the widening between the wealthy and those left behind is sparking debate, anger and sporadic protests.

Two young girls hold hands as their mother sifts through used clothing at Sacred Heart Community Service on Friday, Feb. 21, 2014, in San Jose, Calif. Silicon Valley is entering it's fifth year of unfettered growth, with among the highest incomes in the U.S. and the largest share of high-growth, high-wage jobs. Those gains have doubled housing costs in the past five years while wages for low and middle skilled workers are stagnant. Homelessness and racial disparities are on the rise. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Some even with jobs get supplies from a food bank. Rants against the 1 percent are spray-painted on buildings in wealthy towns. Security guards rally outside Apple Inc. demanding better wages with a banner that reads: "What's the matter with Silicon Valley? Prosperity for some, poverty for many. That's what."

Explore further: Google tries ferry service for workers in East Bay

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alfie_null
not rated yet Mar 06, 2014
All that growth, is it because companies are selling stuff, or because investors are tossing money around?

Knowing the median income isn't enough. There may be relatively few people earning close to the median.

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