Unlike other cities its size, more than half of the Rochester’s children live in poverty, according to a new report that documents the growth of poverty in the city of Rochester.
Rochester ranks first among similar-sized cities for having 16.2 percent of people in extreme poverty, which is defined as people living below half of the federal poverty level, according to a report released Jan. 8 by ACT Rochester and Rochester Area Community Foundation.
The city’s poverty rate has risen and is now 32.9 percent, according to the report "Benchmarking Rochester’s Poverty: A 2015 Update and Deeper Analysis of Poverty in the City of Rochester." The report was written by Edward J. Doherty, who retired in 2014 as the Community Foundation’s vice president of community programs.
Rochester’s child poverty rate also has risen to 50.1 percent and is the highest among 18 similar cities.
Rochester’s poverty was compared to other similar sized cities including Buffalo; Hartford, Conn.; Richmond, Va.; Birmingham, Ala.; Tulsa, Okla.; Louisville, Ky.; and Honolulu, Hawaii.
Of the top 75 metro areas in the country, only Detroit, Cleveland and Dayton had higher childhood poverty rates than Rochester. Also, Rochester’s poverty rate for female-headed households was highest among the similar-sized group of cities.