USA Today lists Ville Platte as Louisiana’s poorest town

By: ELIZABETH
WEST
Managing Editor

In a recent article from USA Today, reporters took a closer look at poverty in the United States and revealed that the poorest town in Louisiana is the City of Ville Platte.
The opening of the piece, written by Samuel Stebbins and Michael B. Sauter with 24/7 Wall Street, states, “Income inequality is a growing problem in the United States. Perhaps more evident now than in any time in recent memory, conspicuous consumption is juxtaposed with abject poverty in cities and towns across the country. While the rich and poor often live side by side, in some American towns, serious financial hardship is a daily reality for most who live there.”
According to Stebbins and Sauter’s article, “in every state, there are towns where the median household income falls well below the state and national median incomes.” It also stated that “in over a dozen states, there are towns in which the typical household earns less than half the income that a typical household statewide earns,” and the City of Ville Platte is one of those places.
The poorest towns were determined after “24/7 Wall Street reviewed median household incomes in every town with a population between 1,000 and 25,000 in each state from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey.”
According to the article, “several towns in Louisiana have a low enough median household income to qualify as the poorest town in most other states.” However, Ville Platte, which has a poverty rate of 38.4 percent, “is the only town in Louisiana where the typical household earns less than $20,000 a year.”
In the article, the median household income for Ville Platte was listed as $18,679, which is “less than half the statewide median income of $45,652,” and “nearly a third of the national median income of $55,322.”
Besides Ville Platte, three other towns had a median household income below $20,000. Those three towns include Brownsville, Florida, which has a median household income of $19,796, East Cleveland, Ohio, which has a median income of $19,953, and Centreville, Illinois, which has median household income of $16,715.
To see the full list of poorest towns, visit www.usatoday.com and search for the article titled “Which town in your state is the poorest?”

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