Document Type

Fact Sheet

Publication Date



Massachusetts has lower poverty rates compared to US average for both native born and foreign born populations. But, foreign-born poverty rates in Massachusetts are only slightly lower than those for foreign born in the US.

Poverty rates for those born outside the US differ considerably across Massachusetts’ ten largest cities, ranging from 8.3% in Quincy to 28.1% in Springfield. But foreign-born poverty rates do not always exceed those of foreign born. In Brockton, Lowell, New Bedford, Springfield and Worcester those born outside the US were less likely to be poor than the native-born population.


Who is poor in Massachusetts? How does the Commonwealth fare compared to the US in terms of poverty rates? Which Massachusetts cities have the lowest and highest poverty rates? Researchers at the Center for Social Policy have created eight one-page fact sheets on poverty in the Massachusetts using the recently released 5-year sample of the American Community Survey. Each of the one-page fact sheets provides information of poverty among a particular demographic groups (age, gender, race/ethnicity, education level, nativity, and family status), comparing Massachusetts rates to that in the US, providing the distribution of the whole population and the total poor population, and comparing poverty rate in the 10 largest Massachusetts cities.

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