Nearly 1.9 million Illinois residents live in poverty

Nearly 1.9 million Illinois residents live in poverty

Fifteen percent of Illinois families lived in poverty in 2011. That's according to new data released by the Census Bureau today from the 2011 American Community Survey.

It's nearly 150,000 more people living in poverty than in 2010.

Illinois is one of 17 states where poverty rates increased, and the third year in a row that poverty has risen in the state.

Practically, that number may be even higher, since it's calculated based a nation-wide standard for poverty and doesn't take into account regional differences in cost of living. For example, in Chicago, the median rent plus utilities for an apartment was $905, higher than the nationwide average of $871.

Another 4.7 percent of Illinois residents had incomes 100 and 125 percent of the poverty level.

With massive state budget cuts to social service programs, what will we see when the 2012 data is released? You tell us. Leave us a comment and share your thoughts on the new numbers.

Photo credit: Shutterstock/Blue Jeans with Fifteen American Dollars

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