Marriage Measures Guide of State-Level Statistics. North Carolina

03/30/2008

Overview and Key Statistics

State Population

  • In 2006, North Carolina’s state population was 8,856,505, which ranked tenth among the 50 states.
  • The state’s largest racial/ethnic groups were whites (68 percent), African Americans (21 percent) and Hispanics (7 percent).

Marriage and Childbearing

  • In 2004, there were 44,178 births to unmarried women in North Carolina, accounting for 36.9 percent of all births in the state.
  • North Carolina ranked 18th among the 50 states in the highest percentage of births to unmarried women.
  • In 2004, there were 18,670 births to unmarried African American women in North Carolina, 15,464 births to unmarried white women, and 8,671 births to unmarried Hispanic women.

Marriage and Divorce

  • In 2005, North Carolina had a divorce rate of 4.1 divorces per 1,000 people.  North Carolina’s divorce rate ranked 20th highest among the 44 states that report divorce statistics.
  • The percentage of adults who were divorced was 18.7 percent among African Americans, 13.3 percent among whites, and 7.9 among Hispanics.

Marriage and Low-Income Children

  • In 2006, North Carolina had 940,338 children living in families with incomes below 200 percent of the federal poverty level.  Over two-fifths of these children (41.8 percent) were living with married parents.
  • The state’s largest group of low-income children lived with married parents in urban areas.  In 2006, there were 237,927 children in this group.
  • In 2006, 41 percent of low-income children in North Carolina were white, 35 percent were African American, and 17 percent were Hispanic.

 

TABLE NC-1.

NORTH CAROLINA

NONMARITAL BIRTHS,

BY MOTHER’S AGE, RACE/ETHNICITY, EDUCATION LEVEL, AND COUNTY

 

 

North Carolina

 

South Atlantic Regiona

 

United States

Population Group

Number of Births to Unmarried Women

Number of Births to All Women

Percent of Births to Unmarried Women

 

Percent of Births to Unmarried Women

 

Percent of Births to Unmarried Women

Mother’s Age

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Less than 18

      4,254

      4,712

 90.3

 

 90.8

 

90.6

18 to 29

     33,458

     73,561

 45.5

 

 48.2

 

45.3

Over 30

      6,466

     41,574

 15.6

 

 16.7

 

16.0

Mother’s Race/Ethnicityb, c

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

White

     15,464

     70,256

 22.0

 

 24.8

 

24.5

African American

     18,670

     27,430

 68.1

 

 66.4

 

69.3

Hispanic

      8,671

     17,295

 50.1

 

 45.1

 

46.4

Other

      1,332

      4,771

 27.9

 

 14.5

 

21.7

Mother’s Educationb

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Less than high school

     18,032

     27,378

 65.9

 

 66.4

 

60.9

High school graduate

     23,755

     60,485

 39.3

 

 41.3

 

39.8

College graduate

      2,145

     31,377

  6.8

 

  7.3

 

7.0

Geographic Area

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mecklenburg County

      4,535

     12,962

 35.0

 

---

 

---

Wake County

      3,081

     11,751

 26.2

 

---

 

---

All other counties

     36,562

     95,134

 38.4

 

---

 

---

Total

     44,178

    119,847

 36.9

 

 38.1

 

35.8

 

Source:     National Center for Health Statistics.  See Technical Appendix for details.

a Includes Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia.

bNumber of births in groups may not sum to state total (bottom row) due to missing demographic information.

cSee Technical Appendix for definition of racial/ethnic groups.

 

TABLE NC-2.

NORTH CAROLINA

DIVORCE RATES,

BY GENDER, RACE/ETHNICITY, EDUCATION LEVEL, AND GEOGRAPHIC AREA

 

Overall Rates, 2005

Measure

North Carolina

 

South Atlantic Regiona

 

United Statesb

Number of divorces granted

     35,684

 

    189,151

 

846,166

Number of divorces granted per 1,000 peoplec

  4.1

 

  4.1

 

3.6

State ranking (highest to lowest)b

 20

 

 

 

 

 

Source:     National Center for Health Statistics. See Technical Appendix for details.

a Includes Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia.

b Excludes six states where data are not available.  See Technical Appendix for list.

c This statistic should not be interpreted as the number of marriages that end in divorce.  See p. 7 for details.

 

Percentage of Ever-Married Adults Who Are Divorced, 2006

 

North Carolina

 

South Atlantic Regiond

 

United States

Population Group

Number of
Divorced People

Percent of
Group

 

Percent of
Group

 

Percent of
Group

Gender

 

 

 

 

 

 

Men

    293,910

 12.9

 

 14.0

 

 13.7

Women

    391,157

 14.6

 

 16.3

 

 16.0

Race/Ethnicitye

 

 

 

 

 

 

White

    498,335

 13.3

 

 14.8

 

 15.0

African American

    148,410

 18.7

 

 19.7

 

 21.1

Hispanic

     18,830

  7.9

 

 13.2

 

 12.2

Other

     19,492

 11.1

 

 10.8

 

 10.4

Education Level

 

 

 

 

 

 

Less than high school

    111,279

 13.4

 

 14.2

 

 13.4

High school graduate

    436,899

 15.2

 

 16.8

 

 16.8

College graduate

    136,889

 11.1

 

 12.4

 

 11.9

Geographic Areae

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rural

    248,109

 13.9

 

 14.6

 

 14.5

Urban

    436,958

 13.8

 

 15.4

 

 15.1

Total

    685,067

 13.8

 

 15.2

 

 15.0

 

Source:     American Community Survey (ACS), 2006.  See Technical Appendix for details.

Notes:       Sample limited to ever-married individuals ages 15 and older.  Those who have remarried after a divorce are not counted as divorced in these percentages. See Technical Appendix for details.

d Includes Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia.

e See Technical Appendix for definition of racial/ethnic groups and geographic areas.

 

TABLE NC-3.

NORTH CAROLINA

DISTRIBUTION OF LOW-INCOME CHILDREN,

BY FAMILY TYPE AND GEOGRAPHIC AREA

 

 

 

North Carolina

 

South Atlantic Regiona

 

United States

Geographic
Areab

Family
Type

Number of
Children

Percent of
Children

 

Percent of
Children

 

Percent of
Children

All Areas

Married Parents

    393,440

 41.8

 

 40.7

 

45.4

 

Cohabiting Parents

     82,425

  8.8

 

  8.9

 

9.1

 

Single Parent

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Never married

    161,902

 17.2

 

 17.6

 

14.9

 

Formerly married

    181,816

 19.3

 

 18.5

 

18.0

 

Neither Parent

     48,637

  5.2

 

  5.2

 

4.3

 

Unknownc

     72,118

  7.7

 

  9.0

 

8.3

 

Total

    940,338

100.0

 

100.0

 

100.0

Rural

Married Parents

    155,513

 43.2

 

 41.7

 

48.0

 

Cohabiting Parents

     32,774

  9.1

 

  8.7

 

9.6

 

Single Parent

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Never married

     45,914

 12.8

 

 14.3

 

10.3

 

Formerly married

     76,821

 21.4

 

 19.8

 

19.0

 

Neither Parent

     19,374

  5.4

 

  6.2

 

5.2

 

Unknownc

     29,347

  8.2

 

  9.3

 

7.9

 

Total

    359,743

100.0

 

100.0

 

100.0

Urban

Married Parents

    237,927

 41.0

 

 40.4

 

44.8

 

Cohabiting Parents

     49,651

  8.6

 

  9.0

 

9.0

 

Single Parent

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Never married

    115,988

 20.0

 

 18.6

 

15.9

 

Formerly married

    104,995

 18.1

 

 18.2

 

17.7

 

Neither Parent

     29,263

  5.0

 

  4.9

 

4.1

 

Unknownc

     42,771

  7.4

 

  8.9

 

8.3

 

Total

    580,595

100.0

 

100.0

 

100.0

 

Source:     American Community Survey (ACS), 2006.  See Technical Appendix for details.

Note:          Low-income children are defined as those living in families with incomes below 200 percent of the federal poverty line.

a Includes Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia.

b See Technical Appendix for definition of geographic areas.

c Children in complex family types that cannot be distinguished using ACS data.  See Technical Appendix for details.

 

TABLE NC-4.

NORTH CAROLINA

DISTRIBUTION OF LOW-INCOME CHILDREN,

BY FAMILY TYPE AND RACIAL/ETHNIC BACKGROUND

 

 

 

North Carolina

 

South Atlantic Regiona

 

United
States

Racial/Ethnic Groupb

Family Type

Number of
Children

Percent of
Children

 

Percent of
Children

 

Percent of
Children

White

Married Parents

    210,113

 54.0

 

 51.8

 

52.3

 

Cohabiting Parents

     33,916

  8.7

 

  9.9

 

9.9

 

Single Parent

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Never married

     15,164

  3.9

 

  5.3

 

6.5

 

Formerly married

     90,443

 23.2

 

 20.9

 

21.0

 

Neither Parent

     14,523

  3.7

 

  4.5

 

4.0

 

Unknownc

     25,206

  6.5

 

  7.6

 

6.2

 

Total

    389,365

100.0

 

100.0

 

100.0

African
American

Married Parents

     60,845

 18.5

 

 20.8

 

20.0

Cohabiting Parents

     19,528

  5.9

 

  6.8

 

6.3

 

Single Parent

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Never married

    120,053

 36.5

 

 35.0

 

37.3

 

Formerly married

     66,677

 20.3

 

 19.0

 

18.6

 

Neither Parent

     25,097

  7.6

 

  7.0

 

6.9

 

Unknownc

     36,800

 11.2

 

 11.6

 

10.9

 

Total

    329,000

100.0

 

100.0

 

100.0

Hispanic

Married Parents

     93,128

 59.0

 

 56.5

 

53.8

 

Cohabiting Parents

     23,176

 14.7

 

 11.4

 

9.9

 

Single Parent

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Never married

     15,640

  9.9

 

  8.2

 

10.3

 

Formerly married

     13,245

  8.4

 

 13.8

 

14.1

 

Neither Parent

      4,734

  3.0

 

  3.1

 

3.0

 

Unknownc

      8,023

  5.1

 

  7.1

 

8.9

 

Total

    157,946

100.0

 

100.0

 

100.0

Other

Married Parents

     29,354

 45.8

 

 49.7

 

50.0

Cohabiting Parents

      5,805

  9.1

 

  9.0

 

9.5

Single Parent

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Never married

     11,045

 17.3

 

 14.5

 

12.0

 

Formerly married

     11,451

 17.9

 

 14.7

 

15.8

 

Neither Parent

      4,283

  6.7

 

  4.6

 

4.0

 

Unknownc

      2,089

  3.3

 

  7.5

 

8.7

 

Total

     64,027

100.0

 

100.0

 

100.0

 

Source:     American Community Survey (ACS), 2006.  See Technical Appendix for details.

Note:          Low-income children are defined as those living in families with incomes below 200 percent of the federal poverty line.

a Includes Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia.

b See Technical Appendix for definition of racial/ethnic groups.

c Children in complex family types that cannot be distinguished using ACS data.  See Technical Appendix for details.

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