Looking for the Causes of Suburban Poverty

Why is poverty increasing in the suburbs? It's not as simple as blaming the shifting demographics of the urban core.
June 14, 2018, 1pm PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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"According to a May report from the Pew Research Center [pdf], since 2000, suburban counties have experienced sharper increases in poverty than urban or rural counties," according to an article by Scott W. Allard.

Allard is the author of the book, Places in Need, and he writes that the new analysis by Pew is consistent with his findings as well research from around the country over the past decade. However, the suburbanization of poverty predates the Great Recession.

The suburbanization of poverty is one of the most important demographic trends of the last 50 years. Poverty rates across the suburban landscape have increased by 50 percent since 1990. The number of suburban residents living in high poverty areas has almost tripled in that time.

As for the causes of the trend, Allard says the growing poverty rights in the suburbs have most to with changes in labor markets: "Good-paying jobs that don’t require advanced training have started to disappear in suburbs, just as they did in central cities more than a quarter century ago."

Allard concludes with a few policy recommendations.

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Published on Thursday, May 31, 2018 in The Conversation
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