Poverty & Disadvantage in New York City

New York City is the home of a diverse population of over 8 million people. As in many major metropolis’, many New Yorkers struggle every day to get by and get ahead. CPSP is following representative samples of New Yorkers over time in order to document the prevalence and dynamics of poverty and disadvantage in the city, as well as what can be done about it.


Robin Hood Poverty Tracker

With funding from Robin Hood , we are following a representative sample of approximately 4,000 New Yorkers to understand the dynamics of income poverty, material hardship, and health over time. This study builds on an earlier study following approximately 2,000 New Yorkers from late 2012 to early 2015. Click here to access the data and here to see results from the initial panel. Or click on any of the links below to see our reports on the data thus far.


SNAP Take-Up in NYC

Government policies and programs provide critical resources to low- and moderate-income families in need. But many eligible families do not access benefits to which they are eligible. Poverty Tracker data shows that nearly 1 in 4 SNAP-eligible NYC households don’t receive SNAP benefits. This report uses Poverty Tracker data to identify the groups that are less likely to take-up SNAP, despite their eligibility, and the life events associated with SNAP enrollment. Click here to read a summary of the findings and here to read the full report.


Qualitative Study of Service Use in NYC

Poverty, hardship, and other forms of disadvantage are prevalent among New York City individuals and families. Yet many disadvantaged New Yorkers don’t seek help for their problems from the community-based organizations that might help them improve their situations. We interviewed 70 members of our Poverty Tracker survey to find out why. Click here to read our brief on the key findings of the study.

Use and Poverty Impacts of Food Pantries and Food Stamps

In this report, the CPSP uses Poverty Tracker data to document food insecurity in NYC and the potential impacts of increased food pantry use and SNAP receipt on the NYC poverty rate. We find that the poverty rate would fall 18% and more than 360,000 people would move out of poverty if all New Yorkers with a severe or moderate food hardship received weekly food aid through pantries or soup kitchens. Increasing SNAP take-up among SNAP-eligible households would also move over 200,000 New Yorkers out of poverty. Access the report here.


Underemployment and Material Hardship in NYC

According to Poverty Tracker data, many NYC workers, including full-time workers, are underemployed (defined as wanting more work hours). Compared to fully-employed workers, the underemployed are more likely to be stuck in low-wage jobs and face elevated levels of severe material hardship. This report identifies those groups that are most likely to be underemployed and examines the relationship between underemployment, low wages, and severe material hardship. Click here for the report summary and here for the full report.