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NWLC’s detailed analysis of U.S. Census poverty, income, and health insurance data released on September 13, 2016 found that women’s poverty rates were once again higher than the poverty rates for men. The data also show that income supports such as Social Security benefits lifted the income of millions of Americans above the poverty line.

The wage gap closed by just a penny in 2015, with women working full, time, year round paid only 80 cents for every dollar paid to their male counterparts.

Data in Detail:

 

Poverty:

  • More than 1 in 8 adult women (18 and older), nearly 17 million, lived in poverty in 2015. The poverty rate among women was 13.4 percent in 2015, down from 14.7 percent in 2014.
  • The poverty rate for adult men in 2015 was 9.9 percent, down from 10.9 percent in 2014.
  • Poverty rates were higher for women who head families (36.5 percent), African American women (23.1 percent), Hispanic women (20.9 percent) and young, Milennial women ages 18-24 (21.7 percent).
  • The poverty rate for women 65 and older decreased to 10.3 percent in 2015, from 12.1 percent in 2014. About two-thirds (64.6 percent) of the elderly poor were women in 2015.
  • About 1 in 5 (19.7 percent) children (19.7 percent) lived in poverty in 2015, down from 21.1 percent in 2014. More than half (56.2 percent) lived in female-headed families in 2015, unchanged from 2014.

Wage Gap:

  • Women working full time, year round were paid only 80 cents for every dollar paid to their male counterparts, statistically unchanged from 2014.
  • Black women working full time, year round were typically paid only 63 cents for every dollar paid to their white, non-Hispanic male counterparts, statistically unchanged from 2014.
  • Hispanic women working full time, year round were typically paid only 54 cents for every dollar paid to their white, non-Hispanic male counterparts, statistically unchanged from 2014.

Health insurance:

  • The uninsurance rate among women 18-64 dropped by nearly one-third, from 16.9 percent in 2013 to 11.3 percent in 2015.
  • More than 16.8 million women 18-64 relied on Medicaid in 2015, up 3.2 million since the Affordable Care Act was implemented in 2013.

 

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