Presentation - The Center for Migration Studies of New York (CMS)
Transcript Presentation - The Center for Migration Studies of New York (CMS)
NYC’s Alternative Poverty Measure:
The Need to Identify Unauthorized Immigrants
Center for Migration Studies
September 29, 2014
The Current Poverty Measure:
An Income Adequacy Approach
Threshold: income needed to maintain an
“adequate” standard of living (“poverty line”)
• Established mid-1960s as three times the cost of the
USDA’s “Economy Food Plan”
• Adjusted annually by the change in the Consumer Price
• Uniform across US: No regional differences
Total family pre-tax cash income
What’s wrong with the current measure?
Pre–tax cash does not capture:
•EITC and other refundable tax credits
•Food Stamps and other nutritional programs
•Housing subsidies such as public housing and Section 8 housing
•Income used for taxes is not available for spending
— Food is no longer one-third of the budget
— No accounting for cost of living differences across the
country, especially housing costs
— Medical expenses, commuting and childcare costs are not
included in the threshold
Comparison of Poverty Measures : Official U.S. and NYC-CEO
Established in early 1960s at three
times the cost of “Economy Food
Equal to the 33rd percentile of family
expenditures on food, clothing,
shelter, and utilities, plus 20 percent
more for miscellaneous needs.
Updated by change in Consumer
Updated by the change in
expenditures for the items in the
No geographic adjustment.
Inter-area adjustment based on
differences in housing costs.
Total family after-tax income.
Total family pre-tax cash income.
Includes earned income and
transfer payments, if they take the
form of cash.
Include value of near-cash, in-kind
benefits such as Food Stamps.
Housing status adjustment.
Subtract work-related expenses such
as childcare and transportation costs.
Subtract medical out-of-pocket
Comparison of Thresholds, Income, and Poverty Rates, Official and CEO, 2012
Sources: U.S. Bureau of the Census and American Community Survey Public Use Micro Sample as augmented by CEO.
Note: Incomes are measured at the 20th percentile and stated in family size and composition-adjusted dollars.
CEO Poverty Rates by Nativity/Citizenship
Percent of Population
Citizen by Birth
Not a Citizen
Source: American Community Survey Public Use Micro Sample as augmented by CEO.
The CEO Project:
Assigning legal status to noncitizens in
NYC’s share of
NY State in the State
NYC estimates are based on the reporting of foreign-born in New
New York City, 2012
Who is a noncitizen?
Legal Permanent Resident (LPR)
Temporary Protected Status
Nicaraguan Adjustment Act
Source: 2012 American Community Survey-Public Use Microdata Sample as augmented by CEO
WHAT DO WE END UP WITH?
CEO Poverty Rate with
Estimates of Unauthorized Immigrants
Total impact unknown
• Change in overall rate?
• Change in depth and composition?
• Change in the rate among different types of immigrants?
Focus of Many Policy Initiatives
• Municipal ID cards
– Access to basic services – bank accounts, leases, access to City
buildings, including schools.
• Outreach for DACA and Universal Pre-K
• Mayoral Task Force on Immigrant Health Initiatives
• Expanded access to translation services
– Including at point of contact with city services needed to
remove barriers to success:
• small business services, housing and school programs.
Poverty Research Unit:
NYC Center for Economic Opportunity
• CEO Reports:
www.nyc.gov/ceo: poverty data and research
• Vicky Virgin, Research Associate