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Census: Detroit incomes up, poverty down, but results still mixed

Students listen to an instructor at the Detroit Training Center

The U.S. Census' American Community Survey was released Sept. 14, and the numbers overall are very encouraging for Detroit. 

According to an analysis in the Detroit News, from 2016 to 2017 poverty is down 4 percent to 35.7 percent. Median income rose 7.5 percent from $28,099 last year, "the first significant income increase recorded by the U.S. Census Bureau in the city since the 2000 census," write Christine MacDonald and Nicquel Terry. 

But it's hard to tell if much or any of those gains have made their way out to the neighborhoods. "Overall it's a great story for Detroit," Kurt Metzger, demographer and director emeritus of Data Driven Detroit, said in the article. "But when you look beneath the surface, we still have a lot of issues. There is a constant narrative out there: Are all boats rising together?"

Detroit is still the poorest big city in the nation, and Mayor Mike Duggan says there's still much more work to be done. The article also cites job programs and opportunities that have had a city-wide benefit, like Detroit At Work job training program. 

Numbers for the state overall were positive, with income rising and poverty decreasing. Though those rates were still below the national average. 

Read the full Detroit News article here
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