How Many Kids in the United States Are Living in Poverty?

ORIGINALLY POSTED JULY 10, 2018, AND UPDATED JANUARY 21, 2020, BY THE ANNIE E. CASEY FOUNDATION

In America today, 18% of all kids — nearly 13 million children total — are living in poverty.

In the last decade, this rate has risen from 18% in 2007 and 2008, peaked at 23% in 2011 and 2012, and returned to 18% in 2017 and 2018.

Where is child poverty most common in the United States?

The likelihood that a child lives in poverty varies by location. Child poverty is most common in Mississippi, Louisiana and New Mexico. In each of these states, more than 25% of all kids are growing up in poverty. In Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory, the child poverty rates climbs even higher — to 57%. Meanwhile, kids in North Dakota and Utah are the least likely to live in poverty — just 10% do.

Check the 2019 KIDS COUNT Data Book and the KIDS COUNT Data Center to learn the child poverty rate in each state.

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