One-Fifth of Californians Living in Poverty: Report

California is a now the nationwide leader in an unfortunate category.

According to a U.S. Census Bureau report, the golden state has the highest percentage of its population living in poverty compared to any other state based on a new measuring stick.

The New York Times reported that the enhanced calculation system reports that 20.6 percent of Californians, which in reality equates to 7,959 individuals, live in poverty. Florida came in second with 19 percent of its population calling the sidewalks or shelters home. Louisiana and New York finished in a tie for third place at 17.9 percent, according to the report.

Although technically not a state and significantly smaller than California in terms of population size, 22.2 percent of residents in the District of Columbia were recorded to be living in impoverished conditions, according to the report.

Poverty levels can vary across the country because of fluctuating taxes, housing costs and income levels. Based on that understanding, the U.S. Census Bureau disregarded the official poverty measure to utilize what its calls the "Supplemental Poverty Measure" in an attempt to account for those shifting variations.

High taxes and skyrocketing rent prices are just some of the reasons why folks in California have fallen on hard times recently, as reported by the New York Times.

The state's updated poverty numbers stand in stark contrast with the fact that California is home to the highest amount of residents earning ten-figure salaries, according to the New York Times.

EDITOR'S NOTE: A previous version of this article incorrectly stated the population of the District of Columbia. The correct population of that region is 672,228 people as of July 2015, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. 

Contact Us