To stabilize communities in Southeast Louisiana, all families need the skills, resources, and opportunities to meet basic needs today. Each household earning enough to meet basic needs–without government assistance–is the first step to ensuring household stability. Experts have worked to develop alternative measures to common poverty thresholds that consider modern-day expenses, family size, and regional cost of living differences.
ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) identifies households that earn above the Federal Poverty Level, but below the basic cost of living. There are more ALICE households than households in poverty, and the number of ALICE households is increasing at a faster rate. Among the seven parishes served by United Way of Southeast Louisiana, Washington and St. Bernard have the highest percent of residents living under the ALICE threshold, at 63 and 59 percent respectively. St. Tammany has the smallest percent of households under the ALICE threshold, with 43 percent.
Data included in this dashboard is prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and comes from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). According to data measured between 2015 and 2019, among United Way of Southeast Louisiana’s seven parishes, Washington and Orleans have the highest share of households earning below a living wage, at 68 percent and 63 percent respectively. Even in St. Tammany Parish, 45 percent of all households earn below a living wage. In each parish, white households are the least likely to earn below a living wage.