In his 1964 State of the Union address, President Lyndon Johnson declared war on poverty. The ambitious initiative gave way to a range of policies aimed at eliminating poverty in the United States.
Now, over half a decade later, 42.6 million Americans still live below the poverty line.
The Department of Health and Human Services sets the poverty line at an annual income of $12,140 for an individual and $25,100 for a family of four. Since peaking at just under 16% in the wake of the Great Recession, the U.S. poverty rate has improved considerably. As of 2017, 13.4% of Americans live below the poverty line.
While the Johnson’s war on poverty ultimately proved unsuccessful, poverty reduction remains a central policy goal of federal, state, and local governments. And some cities have done better than others in reducing poverty.
24/7 Wall St. reviewed metro area level poverty data from the U.S. Census Bureau to identify the cities with the lowest poverty rates. In 30 of the 382 metro areas reviewed, fewer than 9% of residents live in poverty.