In Michigan, 63 percent of Black households are struggling to afford basic necessities like housing, child care, food, transportation, and technology, according recently released 2018 ALICE data
. These households, also known as ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) earn more than the Federal Poverty Level, but not enough to cover the basic cost of living, called the ALICE threshold, in their counties. The 63 percent of Black households falling below the ALICE Threshold was almost double that of white households-just 36 percent.
During the recovery from the Great Recession, the number of Black households under the ALICE Threshold in Michigan increased by eleven percent from 2010 to 2018, while the number off white households below the Threshold increased by only one percent. And since COVID 19, in households below the ALICE threshold is even greater. This means that a very large percentage of parents, especially Black parents have to make trade-offs between necessities like rent or stocking the refrigerator or going without healthcare as a parent to ensure that a child has access to preschool.
We know that where you live and where children are raised can have a strong influence on opportunity. We also know that when these factors are combined with race, people of color are disproportionately impacted. Over the next few days, we will be exploring how ALICE, race, and other factors impact a person’s housing, health, education, financial stability, and more.