Providence Among Top Cities for Income Inequality


Providence had one of the largest income gaps in the country in 2014, according to Census data analyzed by the Brookings Institution.

The top 5 percent of earners in Providence made 15 times what the bottom 20 percent did, ranking it No. 5 in income inequality among cities nationwide, according to the think tank.

Providence's bottom 20 percent earned $12,795 in 2014, while the top 5 percent made at least $196,691.

The data show pay plummeting in U.S. cities for those at the bottom, with many of the poorest households still earning a fraction of what they made before the recession in 2007.

Household income for Providence's poorest decreased by 8 percent since 2007.

The broader Providence region ranked 14th among metro areas for income inequality.

When asked about the findings, Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza said he's committed to addressing income inequality through programs that create good paying jobs and encourage economic growth. He cited the "EveryHome initiative," which creates jobs to revitalize vacant and abandoned homes in the city.

"Providence was among the communities hit hardest by the housing crisis and opportunities like EveryHome will help Providence recover faster and with a stronger middle class," the Democratic mayor said in a statement Friday. 

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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