Memphis and Shelby County have made important strides in reducing child poverty, but children still bear the brunt of poverty and suffer the consequences.
In 2019, Memphis continued in second place in both overall poverty and child poverty among large Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) with populations greater than 1,000,000 and in child poverty among large cities with populations greater than 500,000.
Memphis, however, ranked in fifth place in overall poverty among large cities with populations greater than 500,000, and improved significantly among MSAs with populations larger than 500,000. Memphis may be doing better, but children continue suffering the most egregious poverty levels.
Additionally, median incomes for all groups increased in both Shelby County and the City of Memphis. This is in contrast with the rest of Tennessee, where median incomes for all groups declined. In 2019, Memphis performed better than Tennessee, even though poverty rates remain higher in Memphis than in the rest of the State
Source(s): The 2020 Update of the Memphis Poverty Fact Sheet, Produced Annually by Dr. Elena Delavega of the School of Social Work at the University of Memphis, and Dr. Gregory M. Blumenthal. Data from the 2019 American Community Survey Released in September 2020 and previous datasets.