Participation in federal programs
Adults and children receiving welfare (TANF): 58,912
Children receiving food stamps (SNAP): 310,000
EITC recipients: 406,000
Families receiving child care subsidies: 21,300
Households receiving federal rental assistance: 172,980
Households receiving LIHEAP (Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program): 183,009
Number of children enrolled in Medicaid and CHIP: 655,789
Number of women and children receiving WIC (Women, Infants and Children supplemental nutrition program): 114,419
Participants in all Head Start programs: 14,331
Asset poverty rate: 26.9%
Average college graduate debt: $31,411
Unbanked households: 5.7%
Poverty by demographic
Child poverty rate: 14.5%
Number of Black and Hispanic children below 200% poverty: 218,000
Percent of single-parent families with related children that are below poverty: 32%
Senior poverty rate: 8.5%
Women in poverty: 11.5%
Children in foster care: 8,539
Number of grandparents raising grandchildren: 86,482
Percent of children in immigrant families: 28%
Percent of children living in single parent families: 32%
Teen birth rate per 1,000 population ages 15-19: 9
Economic well-being
Extreme poverty rate: 7.0%
Food insecurity: 10.3%
Minimum Wage: $11.00
Number of Black and Hispanic children living in families where no parent has full-time, year-round employment: 172,000
Percent of individuals who are uninsured: 2.5%
Percent of jobs that are low-wage: 15.5%
Percent of working families under 200% of the poverty line: 20.2%
Poverty rate: 10.4%
Unemployment rate: 3.7%
High school graduation rate: 86.1%
Percent of adult population with at least a high school degree: 89.1%
Percent of college students with debt: 66%
Percent of population over age 25 with at least a four year college degree: 41.5%
Percent of teens ages 16 to 19 not attending school and not working: 5%
Home foreclosure rate: 1.88%
Homeless people: 19,608
Households paying more than 50% of income on housing: 247,000
Percent renters: 38%
Total households: 2,579,398
Justice System
Number of youth residing in juvenile justice and correctional facilities: 961
Total incarcerated (prison and jail): 19,304

State governments play a significant role in developing policies that help support low-income families. Below is a list of some key Massachusetts policies and a link to an organization that tracks the issue.

Tax & Asset-Building Policy

Family and Work Supports