Analysis

Experts Discuss Links Between Neighborhood Poverty, Family Financial Security

Neighborhood poverty is a key part of household financial security© Holly E Clark / Stocksy

Neighborhood poverty is characterized by the percentage of households that live in poverty within a census tract. To learn more, read "Neighborhood Poverty and Household Financial Security."

Place and neighborhood context have long been highlighted as important factors for household financial security. Research has shown a relationship between high-poverty neighborhoods and unemployment, poorer-performing schools, and increased violence, all of which pose risks to residents' economic well-being. On March 3, Pew hosted a webinar to highlight the role of place in helping or hindering financial security and economic mobility.

The webinar featured highlights from Pew's recent chartbook, “Neighborhood Poverty and Household Financial Security,” which illustrates the health of family balance sheets in high- and low-poverty communities across the United States. The analysis found that low-income residents in low-poverty neighborhoods tend to have higher savings and wealth and lower rates of financial hardship than similar households in higher-poverty communities.

A panel of experts then discussed what these data mean for advocates, service providers, and local governments, and how research about the relationship between neighborhoods and family financial security can be applied at the local level. Finally, participants heard about what local practitioners are doing to put data like these to work in their communities. 

Speakers included:

  • Diana Elliott, then research manager of Pew’s financial security and mobility project.
  • Solana Rice, associate director of state and local policy at the Corporation for Enterprise Development.
  • Brian Collier, executive vice president of the Foundation for the Carolinas.
  • Carrie Cihak, chief of policy for King County (Washington) Executive Dow Constantine

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