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Disheartening Census Data about Poverty -- We're Number One

The Bee reported today on the US Census Bureau's annual data update. Lo and behold, the already-high poverty rate in Arden Arcade rose faster here than any other large place in California. Almost 28% of local residents are impoverished.  The article says Arden Arcade:

  • is where people who cannot afford to live elsewhere find housing
  • where immigrants and refugees, needing public assistance, are told to settle 
  • characterized by cheap, often old, apartments
  • has the county's highest rate of renter-occupied housing (56%, 124% of the county rate)
  • has a significant number of problem apartments ("2000 units, one-third of the county's most troubled rental housing")

At a casual glance, it would be easy to connect the new poverty data with immigrants and refugees, though that would be unfair and misleading. Arden Arcade is 1% Native American (US Census 2010), which means everyone else here is either an immigrant or a refugee or a descendant of an immigrant or a refugee. Assemblyman Ken Cooley is quoted in the article as pointing out the upward mobility of immigrants and refugees. Over time one would expect the current set of impoverished refugees to move up -- and probably out -- as other immigrant groups have in the past. No, something else is probably going on.

"There has been, we think, some bad zoning allowed in Arden Arcade."
Carl Dolk, Advocates for Arden Arcade, stating the obvious in the 9/14/2017 Sacramento Bee article, "Poverty rose faster in this Sacramento suburb than anywhere else in California"
May contain: diagram, map, plot, and atlas
US Census 2016 poverty data: US 14%, CA 13%-15.9%, Sac County 16.9%, Arden Arcade 27.7%
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