Most of Rhode Island’s poverty is concentrated in four cities: Providence, Pawtucket, Central Falls and Woonsocket, according to Kids Count’s annual fact book. So much so that the annual Factbook on children, the economy and health always breaks down its report to compare the “four core cities”* with the rest of the state for emphasis.
Here are some examples:
- 79 percent of public school students in the four core cities are low income; 31 percent from the rest of the state
- There are more than twice as many children from the four core cities that receive cash subsidies (7,077 compared to 2,948) even though there are only half the number of children (73,741 compared to 150,215)
- 35.6 percent of children in the four core cities live below the federal poverty, meaning their families earn less than $18,769 a year; 9.9 percent of the rest of the state does.
- There are almost twice as many children in these four core cities that use food stamps (39,218) than do in the entire rest of the state (24,648). That’s 53 percent of children in the four core cities and 16 percent in the rest of the state.
For more great info from Kids Count click here. But suffice to say, more tax cuts aren’t going to do much at all (and virtually nothing in the short term) to fix the poverty problem in Providence, Pawtucket, Woonsocket and Central Falls.
*Governor Chafee calls these “distressed communities” but you may know them better as places that used to have manufacturing economies or places hit hardest by Carcieri cuts to cities and towns and sometimes they are referred to as ‘communities in need of a public sector haircut, if not a beheading.’