Michigan Demographics of Low-Income Children

All Children

Low-Income

Poor

Young Children

Low-Income

Poor

Research suggests that, on average, families need an income of about twice the federal poverty threshold to meet their most basic needs. Children living in families with incomes below this level—$50,200 for a family of four with two children in 2018—are referred to as low income. The United States measures poverty by an outdated standard developed in the 1960s.

In Michigan, there are 1,118,615 families with 2,139,574 children

Low-Income Children: 42% (895,561) of children live in low-income families (National: 39%).

Parental Employement

  • 47% (424,695) of children in low-income families have at least one parent who is employed full-time, year-round compared to 90% (1,123,513) of children in above low-income families.
  • 34% (303,330) of children in low-income families have at least one parent who is employed either part-year or part-time compared to 8% (96,695) of children in above low-income families.
  • 19% (167,536) of children in low-income families do not have an employed parent compared to 2% (23,805) of children in above low-income families.

Parental Education

  • 86% (140,290) of children whose parents do not have a high school degree live in low-income families.
  • 69% (265,231) of children whose parents have a high school degree, but no college education live in low-income families.
  • 31% (490,040) of children whose parents have some college or more live in low-income families.

Parental Marital Status

  • 56% (503,874) of children in low-income families live with a single parent.
  • 19% (234,720) of children in above low-income families live with a single parent.

Child’s Race/Ethnicity

  • 33% (479,834) of white children live in low-income families.
  • 69% (230,126) of black children live in low-income families.
  • 60% (104,646) of Hispanic children live in low-income families.
  • 26% (16,662) of Asian children live in low-income families.
  • 51% (5,263) of American Indian children live in low-income families.

Child’s Age

  • 46% (311,468) of children, under age 6, live in low-income families.
  • 40% (584,093) of children, age 6 or older, live in low-income families.

Residential Move

  • 20% (176,260) of children in low-income families moved in the last year.
  • 11% (133,109) of children in above low-income families moved in the last year.

Parental Nativity

  • 48% (137,295) of children of immigrant parents live in low-income families.
  • 41% (758,266) of children of native-born parents live in low-income families.

Home Ownership

  • 47% (423,781) of children in low-income families live in owner-occupied housing.
  • 85% (1,061,746) of children in above low-income families live in owner-occupied housing.

Parental Presence

  • 9% (79,357) of low-income children live in families with no parent present.
  • 9% (108,401) of above low-income children live in families with no parent present.

Data Notes and Sources

Because of rounding, not all figures will add up to 100%.

National data were calculated from the 2018 American Community Survey, representing information from 2018. State data were calculated from the 2014-2018 American Community Survey, representing information from the years 2014 to 2018.

Definitions

The demographic findings on this page were calculated using federal poverty thresholds issued by the U.S. Census Bureau. For more information about federal poverty thresholds, see the US Census website.

Child
A child is defined as an individual under the age of 18. Children living independently, living with a spouse, living in group quarters, and children ages 14 and under living with only unrelated adults are excluded from these data.
Low Income
Families and children are defined as low-income if the family income is less than twice the federal poverty threshold (see Poor).
Parent
A parent is defined as an individual over the age of 17 who lives with a dependent child. Among children who do not live with at least one parent, parental characteristics are those of the householder and/or the householder's spouse.
Poor
Families and children are defined as poor if family income is below the federal poverty threshold. The federal poverty threshold for a family of four with two children was $25,100 in 2018, $24,600 in 2017, $24,300 in 2016, $24,250 in 2015, and $23,850 in 2014.

For definitions of other terms, please refer to Explanations of Terms and Data Sources.