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8.1 Seniors Below the Poverty Level

This indicator notes the percent of senior citizens age 65 and older whose income is below the poverty level.

This indicator is part of Seniors age in place.

Indicator description:

This indicator notes the percent of senior citizens age 65 and older whose income is below the poverty level. For 2011, the poverty level was an annual income of $10,788 for a single person over 65 years of age. Poverty among seniors is particularly important, as it affects the seniors ability to live independently and pay for basic needs, including health care. Health care costs typically rise as a person ages.

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Why is this indicator relevant?

Senior citizens with adequate income and resources enjoy a higher quality of life. They are able to afford adequate medical care as they age and are also able to contribute more to the community and their families. In 2007, the American Community Survey (ACS) added Group Quarters to the survey, which included people in jail, shelters, group homes, nursing homes, and dormitories in the sample who were not included before. It is unknown if this change is partly responsible for the sharp rise in poverty of seniors in Albuquerque between 2006 and 2007; all ACS communities were similarly affected.


Data Source:
American Community Survey, US Census Bureau.

What can we tell from the data?

  • Albuquerque senior citizens are experiencing poverty at their lowest rate since 2005.
  • Since 2008, all peer communities and the nation at large have seen a decreased in senior poverty rate, except for Colorado Springs.
  • The poverty rate among Albuquerque seniors declined between 2002-2005, then rose for 5 straight years before seeing a dramatic decrease in 2011.

 

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