Surprising Number of Elderly Live in Poverty

It is surprising, even shocking to learn that between 9 to 15 percent of  elderly Americans live in poverty. The recent debate about requiring Medicare recipients to pay more for medical care and the discussion about reducing Social Security’s cost of living adjustment provoked the Kaiser Family Foundation to do some research. It investigated where poor people over 65 live.

New poverty rate

It also considered a new formula created by the Census Bureau for determining the poverty rate of seniors. In 2011, the Census began to calculate poverty of the elderly by including actual expenses like medical care. The bureaucrats call the new approach the “supplemental” poverty rate.  And under the “supplemental” Kaiser researchers found, “The share of seniors living in poverty is higher in every state under the supplemental measure than under the official measure, and at least twice as high in 12 states: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Maryland, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Nevada, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.”

Take a look a the maps.





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Barbara Nevins Taylor

As the winner of 22 Emmy Awards and a slew of journalism honors and awards, I created to give you the straight story about complicated stuff. Tell us what you want to know and we'll get you the answers.