Participation in federal programs
Adults and children receiving welfare (TANF): 53,757
Children receiving food stamps (SNAP): 268,000
EITC recipients: 387,000
Families receiving child care subsidies: 19,400
Households receiving federal rental assistance: 185,000
Households receiving LIHEAP (Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program): 164,763
Number of children enrolled in Medicaid and CHIP: 683,270
Number of women and children receiving WIC (Women, Infants and Children supplemental nutrition program): 112,763
Participants in all Head Start programs: 12,008
Asset poverty rate: 26.9%
Average college graduate debt: $30,584
Unbanked households: 5.7%
Poverty by demographic
Child poverty rate: 13.3%
Number of Black and Hispanic children below 200% poverty: 209,000
Percent of single-parent families with related children that are below poverty: 28%
Senior poverty rate: 9.0%
Women in poverty: 11.6%
Children in foster care: 10,910
Number of households with grandparents responsible for grandchildren under age 18 23,371
Percent of children in immigrant families: 29%
Percent of children living in single parent families: 33%
Teen birth rate per 1,000 population ages 15-19: 9
Economic well-being
Extreme poverty rate: 7.0%
Food insecurity: 9.6%
Minimum Wage: $11.00
Number of Black and Hispanic children living in families where no parent has full-time, year-round employment: 179,000
Percent of individuals who are uninsured: 2.8%
Percent of jobs that are low-wage: 14.9%
Percent of working families under 200% of the poverty line: 20.4%
Poverty rate: 10.5%
Unemployment rate: 3.8%
High school graduation rate: 87.3%
Percent of adult population with at least a high school degree: 88.7%
Percent of college graduates with debt: 59%
Percent of population over age 25 with at least a four year college degree: 42.7%
Percent of teens ages 16 to 19 not attending school and not working: 4%
Home foreclosure rate: 1.59%
Homeless people: 17,565
Households paying more than 50% of income on housing: 243,000
Percent renters: 38%
Total households: 2,604,954
Justice System
Incarcerated persons per 100,000 residents 188
Number of youth residing in juvenile justice and correctional facilities: 426

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