More than half of Cincinnati’s children live in poverty, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2012 American Community Survey released Sept. 19.
The 2012 rate represents a roughly 10-percent increase in the city’s child poverty rate in the past two years. In 2010, 48 percent of locals younger than 18 were considered impoverished; in 2012, the rate was 53.1 percent.
If the number was reduced back down to 2010 levels, approximately 4,500 Cincinnati children would be pulled out of poverty.
Overall poverty similarly increased in Cincinnati from 30.6 percent in 2010 to 34.1 percent in 2012.
Black residents were hit hardest with 46.4 percent classified as in poverty in 2012, up from 40.8 percent in 2010.
Meanwhile, the poverty rate among white residents went from 19.8 percent in 2010 to 22.9 percent in 2012.
Hispanics of any race were placed at a poverty rate of 51 percent in 2012, but that number had an extraordinary margin of error of 15.5 percent. In 2010, 42 percent of Hispanics were classified as impoverished, but that number had an even larger margin of error of 17.9 percent.
The other local numbers had margins of error ranging from 2.2 percent to 4.9 percent.
The child poverty rates for Cincinnati were more than double Ohio’s numbers. Nearly one in four Ohio children are in poverty, putting the state at No. 33 worst among 50 states for child poverty, according to the Children’s Defense Fund of Ohio. In 2012, the U.S. government put the federal poverty level for a family of four at an annual income of $23,050.
City Council has consistently failed to uphold its commitment to human services in the past decade, which human services agencies say is making the fight against poverty and homelessness more difficult.