ALICE is an acronym for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed. It’s a new way of defining and understanding the struggles of households that earn above the Federal Poverty Level, but not enough to afford a bare-bones household budget.
For far too many families in Whitman County, the cost of living outpaces what they earn. These households struggle to manage even their most basic needs - housing, food, transportation, child care, health care, and necessary technology.
At the end of the month, ALICE households are forced to make impossible choices, such as deciding between quality child care or paying the rent, filling a prescription or fixing the car. These short-term decisions have long-term consequences not only for ALICE families but for all of us.
Who is ALICE?
ALICE is your child care worker, the cashier at your supermarket, the gas attendant, the salesperson at your big box store, your waitress, a home health aide, an office clerk. ALICE cannot always pay the bills, has little or nothing in savings, and is forced to make tough choices such as deciding between quality child care or paying the rent. One unexpected car repair or medical bill can push these financially strapped families over the edge.
The future success of our communities is directly tied to the financial stability of these fragile ALICE households.
ALICE in Whitman County
In 2018, There were 17, 910 households in Whitman
27% lived at or below the Federal Poverty Level
25% were ALICE
48% were above the ALICE threshold
There were 2,881,943 households in Washington state:
10% lived at or below the Federal Poverty Level
23% were ALICE
67% were above the ALICE threshold