In 2007, an estimated 15.8 percent of adults aged 18 and older in the U.S. border region were living below the poverty level.1 Nearly 18 percent of women in the border region had household incomes below 100 percent of poverty, which was more than twice the percentage of women living in poverty in the U.S. population overall (8.8 percent; data not shown).
In the U.S. border region, poverty status varied with age and sex. Women were significantly more likely than men to be living in poverty overall (17.8 versus 13.8 percent, respectively), and in every age group below 65 years of age. About 15 percent of men and women aged 65 years and older had household incomes below the poverty level. Among women, those aged 18–34 years were most likely to have household incomes below 100 percent of poverty (22.5 percent), followed by women aged 55–64 years (17.5 percent).
Poverty status also varies with household type. In 2007, women and men in the U.S. border region who were in married-couple families2 were least likely to have household incomes below 100 percent of poverty (11.8 percent). Women who were heads of households with no spouse present were most likely to be living below the poverty level (31.4 percent). This was significantly more than among men who were heads of households with no spouse present (23.0 percent). Nearly one-quarter of women living alone or with non-relatives also lived in poverty in 2007, as did 19.4 percent of women living with parents or other relatives.
1 The Census Bureau uses a set of money income thresholds
that vary by family size and composition to determine
who is poor. If a family’s total income is less than that
family’s threshold, then that family and every individual
in it is considered to be poor. Examples of 2007 poverty
levels were $10,590 for an individual, and $21,027 for a
family of four. These levels differ from the Federal Poverty
Level used to determine eligibility for Federal programs.↑
2 Families are groups of at least two people related by birth, marriage, or adoption and residing together.↑