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This Is the County With the Highest Poverty Rate in Minnesota

imageForEntry17 YDWAmong developed nations with similarly advanced economies, the United States stands out for having especially high levels of income inequality. Though the U.S. ranks among the wealthiest countries in the world, more than one in every 10 American citizens live below the poverty line – and the problem is getting worse.

Between 2020 and 2021, the most recent years of available data, the number of Americans living below the poverty line climbed from 38.4 million to 41.4 million. The 7.9% year-over-year increase was a break from the nearly decade-long trend of poverty reduction.

The poverty line in the United States now stands at an annual income of $14,580 for an individual and $30,000 for a family of four – with slightly higher thresholds in Alaska and Hawaii. The consequences of living on such low incomes are far reaching and potentially devastating. Individuals living in poverty often struggle to afford basic needs, such as food, shelter, and health care. Additionally, the stress caused by persistent poverty can negatively impact mental health, leading to higher rates of depression, anxiety disorders, and substance abuse.

According to five-year estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2021 American Community Survey, Mahnomen County has the highest poverty rate of any county or county equivalent in Minnesota. An estimated 21.1% of the local population live below the poverty line, compared to the 9.2% statewide poverty rate.

Additionally, the typical household in the county earns $48,021 a year, about $29,700 less than the typical Minnesota household.

Counties or county equivalents were not considered in this analysis if poverty rates were not available in the 2021 ACS, if the population for which the poverty status had been determined was less than 1,000, or if the sampling error associated with a county’s data was deemed too high.

Geography Poverty rate in county or county equivalent (%) Poverty rate in state (%) Median household income in county or county equivalent ($) Median household income in state ($)
Alabama: Greene 39.8 15.8 28,826 54,943
Alaska: Kusilvak 36.6 10.4 37,975 80,287
Arizona: Apache 33.9 13.5 34,788 65,913
Arkansas: Phillips 33.3 16.0 32,235 52,123
California: Trinity 22.5 12.3 42,206 84,097
Colorado: Bent 25.4 9.6 40,972 80,184
Connecticut: New Haven 11.5 10.0 75,043 83,572
Delaware: Kent 13.3 11.4 63,715 72,724
Florida: Hamilton 26.4 13.1 39,346 61,777
Georgia: Lanier 34.1 13.9 33,956 65,030
Hawaii: Hawaii 13.8 9.5 68,399 88,005
Idaho: Madison 24.3 11.4 53,498 63,377
Illinois: Alexander 24.5 11.8 39,871 72,563
Indiana: Monroe 21.8 12.5 54,096 61,944
Iowa: Story 19.4 11.0 62,578 65,429
Kansas: Riley 22.0 11.5 53,296 64,521
Kentucky: Wolfe 34.6 16.3 24,349 55,454
Louisiana: East Carroll 47.3 18.8 25,049 53,571
Maine: Washington 18.7 11.0 46,689 63,182
Maryland: Somerset 20.4 9.2 48,661 91,431
Massachusetts: Suffolk 17.3 9.9 80,260 89,026
Michigan: Isabella 23.8 13.3 48,840 63,202
Minnesota: Mahnomen 21.1 9.2 48,021 77,706
Mississippi: Holmes 39.2 19.4 24,958 49,111
Missouri: Pemiscot 27.5 12.8 35,865 61,043
Montana: Roosevelt 32.3 12.5 47,182 60,560
Nebraska: Thurston 20.5 10.3 56,223 66,644
Nevada: Mineral 19.6 12.9 43,009 65,686
New Hampshire: Sullivan 12.5 7.4 64,587 83,449
New Jersey: Cumberland 15.7 9.8 58,397 89,703
New Mexico: McKinley 34.0 18.3 40,262 54,020
New York: Bronx 26.5 13.5 43,726 75,157
North Carolina: Robeson 27.3 13.7 36,736 60,516
North Dakota: Sioux 38.5 10.7 39,755 68,131
Ohio: Athens 25.5 13.4 47,061 61,938
Oklahoma: Okfuskee 27.6 15.2 43,000 56,956
Oregon: Malheur 19.4 12.1 47,906 70,084
Pennsylvania: Philadelphia 22.8 11.8 52,649 67,587
Rhode Island: Providence 13.6 11.3 65,797 74,489
South Carolina: Dillon 31.2 14.5 39,780 58,234
South Dakota: Todd 59.0 12.5 26,250 63,920
Tennessee: Hancock 29.1 14.3 29,650 58,516
Texas: Dimmit 46.5 14.0 25,000 67,321
Utah: San Juan 21.2 8.8 52,400 79,133
Vermont: Essex 14.7 10.5 48,194 67,674
Virginia: Radford 35.4 9.9 44,360 80,615
Washington: Whitman 24.7 10.0 43,613 82,400
West Virginia: McDowell 28.9 16.9 30,127 50,884
Wisconsin: Menominee 26.2 10.7 54,940 67,080
Wyoming: Albany 23.6 10.7 50,733 68,002
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