Poverty Rate Is Consistent in Illinois

Poverty Rate Is Consistent in Illinois

Poverty has changed in some ways in Illinois over the last 50 years, and in some ways it has not.

The poverty rate is 14.7 percent today, the same as it was in 1960, according to “50 Years Later: Report on Illinois Poverty,” released Thursday by the Social IMPACT Research Center. That amounts to 1.85 million people, up from 1.45 million in 1960.

Director Amy Terpstra says what has changed is there is less rural poverty. The number of Illinois counties with a poverty rate over 20 percent has dropped from 68 to 10 since 1960.

“You see a lot less of that today. Rural poverty is still very much a reality, but in terms of having so many rural places in the state with such deep poverty, that’s certainly not as much of a reality anymore, because what you saw over this 50-year period is a lot of migration to cities,” she said.

Another change: Poverty has grown among working-age men and women, but declined among the elderly. Women are more likely to be poor than men. African-Americans still struggle; 32 percent in Illinois live in poverty, down from 35 percent in 1960.

The report and county data are at

Recent Headlines

in Entertainment

Today in entertainment history: Nov. 30


A look at the Hollywood headlines of years past.

in Music

TOP 10: Count down this week’s hottest tracks


The top 10 songs from the Billboard Hot 100 chart for the week ending Nov. 28.

in Music

This week’s top R&B tracks


LISTEN: This week's top R&B tracks, according to the latest Billboard chart.

in Entertainment

Anne Hathaway expecting first child


The Oscar winner is expecting her first child, according to reports.

in Music

Jack White launches new Third Man Records store in Detroit


Rocker Jack White has launched his first Third Man Records venture in his native Detroit.