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Based on the trend of prior decades, one might have reasonably assumed that high-poverty neighborhoods were an unavoidable aspect of urban life and would continue to grow inexorably in size and population. The latest evidence contradicts this gloomy assessment. This report documents a dramatic decline in the 1990s in the number of high-poverty neighborhoods, their population, and the concentration of the poor in these neighborhoods. It also finds, however, several indications that poverty rose in the older suburbs of many metropolitan areas, even during a decade of economic expansion. The paper concludes with a discussion of the meaning of these trends, and the more recent decline in economic conditions, for poor families and communities in the current decade. (Author)
Washington, D.C.
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