ETI Publications

Document Type

Technical Paper

Publication Date



The Employment and Training Institute was asked to provide a detailed demographic analysis of the population on public assistance and the working poor not receiving public assistance in Milwaukee County. Computerized records of families and individuals receiving Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), food stamps and medical assistance in 1990, 1993 and 1994 were used to construct a picture of Milwaukee County children on public assistance. The Milwaukee County "working poor" population, including families both on and off public assistance, was examined using 1993 income tax data especially generated by the Wisconsin Department of Revenue, detailing the earnings of single parents and married couples. These data were compared to 1990 U.S. census data for Milwaukee County, while recognizing that the significant census undercount in central city Milwaukee may exaggerate the level of AFDC concentration in some neighborhoods. According to 1993 Wisconsin Department of Revenue income tax returns, working poor families, that is, families with adjusted gross income below the poverty level, are located throughout Milwaukee County. However, in two central city Milwaukee zipcode areas (53205 and 53233) over half of all working families had income below the poverty level. In four additional zipcode areas (53204, 53206, 53208 and 53212) over 40 percent of working families had income below poverty.