Exhibit 1 displays select demographic characteristics for low-income single mothers, all single mothers, and the broader group of all women during the base year of the study. Single mothers tended to be younger, were more likely to be black, and had lower levels of educational attainment relative to all women. Single mothers, especially low-income single mothers, also were more likely to be poor and less likely to be covered by health insurance than women overall, and low-income single mothers were more likely than other women to report health or disability problems. Single mothers on average had a somewhat higher rate of employment than all women in the base year, but the subset of single mothers who were low-income had a much lower employment rate than the other two groups. Employed single mothers on average had lower earnings in the base year than all women ($17,592 compared to $22,676). This was especially pronounced among working single mothers with low incomes who had average earnings of $9,673 during the base year of the study.
|All Single Mothers||All Women|
|Less than HS Graduate||39%||24%||15%|
|Income Below Poverty Level||88%||38%||14%|
|Health or Disability Problem||14%||9%||9%|
|No Health Insurance (self)||29%||25%||17%|
|Earnings (1998 dollars)||$9,673||$17,592||$22,676|
|Number in Sample||2,998||7,279||48,629|
|Source: Calculations for age, race, education, poverty, and health characteristics are based on the 1997 and 1998
Annual Social and Economic Supplement of the Current Population Survey.
Calculations for employment and earnings are based on the Social Security Administration's Detailed Earnings Records.