Poverty in Illinois
Summary Statistics 1980-1990
- Between 1980 and 1990 the population of Illinois grew by approximately
3,000 persons; during that time period the population in poverty
increased by approximately 96,000 persons.
- In 1990, 11.6 percent of the population in Illinois lived below
the poverty level. Of the population below poverty, 83 percent
lived in metropolitan areas.
- In Cook County, approximately 14 percent of the population lived
in poverty. In the five adjacent suburb counties, poverty levels
ranged from 2.7 percent (in DuPage County) to 5.9 percent (in
- Between 1980 and 1990, the total number of persons living below
poverty in Illinois increased by nearly 8 percent. In 26 counties,
the population below poverty increased by more than 24 percent
(Figure 3). These counties include metropolitan
counties (e.g. Peoria, Rock Island); rural counties adjacent to
metropolitan counties (e.g. DeKalb, Woodford) and remote rural
counties (e.g. Richland, Perry).
- The most rapid growth of population below poverty has been in
rural counties adjacent to metropolitan counties. Since 1980,
the population below poverty in these counties has increased by
almost 20 percent; while the total population decreased by 6.5
- The population in remote nonmetro counties decreased by 4.2
percent, while the population in poverty in those counties increased
by 17.5 percent.
- In remote nonmetro counties, 16 percent of the population lived
below the poverty line. However, in seven of the nonmetro counties,
the poverty rate exceeded 20 percent.
- In 20 counties, fewer people were below poverty in 1990 than
in 1980 (Figure 3). In all but one of those
counties, the population in poverty declined while the overall
Figures: Poverty in Illinois
Summary Statistics for Illinois
|Total Population (1990)
|Percent Change in Population
|Population Below Poverty (1980)
|Population Below Poverty (1990)
|Percent Change in Population Below Poverty
|Percent of Population Below Poverty (1980)
|Percent of Population Below Poverty (1990)
County with a population of 100,000 or more and a city of at least
50,000. Also includes counties adjacent to a metropolitan county
with a high degree of economic and social integration. Cook County
is often treated independently because of its significantly larger
County which is not contained in a metropolitan area. Nonmetropolitan
counties are further defined as "adjacent" or "remote".
Nonmetro County: Adjacent
Counties that are classified as nonmetro by the U.S. Bureau of the
Census and that are adjacent to at least one metropolitan county.
Poverty Level (1994):
A person is considered to be below poverty if his or her income
is less than $7,360. For a family of four, the poverty level is
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