What is Poverty?

According to the Public Housing Bureau, “On any given night, about 4,000 people sleep on the streets or in shelters across Portland.”   Of that number, approximately 1,325 are children. 2016 Federal Poverty Income Guidelines, informally referred to as the "federal poverty level."  determine the benefit levels of many low-income assistance programs, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (food stamps, reduced/free school lunches, etc.)


Effective July 1, 2016, Oregon minimum wage is $9.75 per hour.    Cost of apartments continue to rise, from low-cost housing @ $450-$800 per month, to $800-$1,500 for 1-2 bedroom properties.   Poverty incomes are stretched thin to cover this cost, but most who have the means are willing to pay.