What are we measuring?
This measure tracks the percentage of Fulton County's residents age 65 and older who live below the poverty line as defined by the U.S.Census Bureau. A senior is considered to be living in poverty if the household in which he or she lives has a total income below a threshold value determined by the size of the family, the age of the head of household and the number of children in the family. For example, the threshold for a senior over 65 years living alone was $11,511 in 2016. The threshold for a household with two adults with a head of household over 65 years was $14,507.
Why are we measuring it?
The growing senior population means that the number of seniors living in poverty is increasing even if the poverty rate among seniors stays constant. Poverty can be especially hard on the senior population, who are more likely to suffer from chronic health problems than the general population. Poverty can also make it more difficult for seniors to live independently.
How are we doing?
The percentage of residents 65 years or older living below poverty has averaged 11.3% since 2007 and stood at 11.5% as of 2017. In 2016, an estimated 12,000 seniors in Fulton County lived below the poverty line. Fulton County had the third highest poverty rate for seniors among its national benchmark counties, ranking just below Milwaukee County, Wisconsin and Orange County, Florida.