Welfare Indicators and Risk Factors: Thirteenth Report to Congress. Table SNAP 3. Characteristics of Food Stamp/SNAP Households: Selected Years 1980–2011

03/01/2014

  Year 1
1980 1984 1988 1990 1996 1998 2000 2005 2010 2011
With Gross Monthly Income: (In Percent)  
    Below the Federal Poverty Levels 87 93 92 92 91 90 89 88 85 83
    Between the Poverty Levels and 130
percent of the Poverty Levels
10 6 8 8 8 9 10 10 11 12
    Above 130 Percent of Poverty 2 1 * * 1 1 1 2 4 5
With Earnings 19 19 20 19 23 26 27 29 30 31
With Public Assistance Income 2 §§ §§ §§ §§ 61 59 56 43 31 30
    With AFDC/TANF Income NA 42 42 42 37 31 26 15 8 8
    With SSI Income 18 18 20 19 24 28 32 26 21 20
With Children 60 61 61 60 60 58 54 54 49 47
    And Female Heads of Household NA 47 50 51 50 47 44 44 NA NA
        With No Spouse Present NA NA 39 37 43 41 38 36 NA NA
With Elderly Members 3 23 22 19 18 16 18 21 17 16 16
Average Household Size 2.8 2.8 2.6 2.6 2.5 2.4 2.3 2.3 2.2 2.1

1 Data were gathered in August in the years 1980-84 and during the summer in the years from 1986 to 1994. Reports from 1995 to the present are based on fiscal year averages.

2 Public assistance income includes: AFDC/TANF, SSI, and general assistance.

3 These data refer to single-parent female heads with only one adult in the household but does not include households with more than one adult, not married, that are headed by a female (such as a single mom with teenage children, one of whom is 18).

4 Elderly members and heads of household include those of age 60 or older.

§§ The total percentage of households with public assistance income is approximately equal to the sum of those with AFDC/TANF and SSI income with some small percentage of households receiving both due to having individual members eligible for different forms of assistance (in 1996 just under 6 percent of households received assistance from multiple sources).

* Less than 0.5 percent.

Sources: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service, Office of Analysis, Nutrition, and Evaluation, Characteristics of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Households, Fiscal Year 2011, Report No. SNAP-12-CHAR (available online at www.fns.usda.gov/system/files/2011Characteristics.pdf and earlier reports.

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