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Confronting Suburban Poverty
Challenges and Directions for the Chicago Region

Elizabeth Kneebone and Alan Berube
Brooking...
1

The geography of poverty and
opportunity has changed

2

Current policies are not aligned
to this new geography

3

We ...
1

The geography of poverty
and opportunity has changed
Today, more of the nation’s poor live in suburbs than in cities
18,000,000
16,000,000

14,000,000
12,000,000
10,000,000
8,...
In the Chicago region, the share of poor residents in the
suburbs climbed to 52 percent in 2012
800,000
700,000
600,000
50...
One-third of the region’s poor live outside Cook County
2007-11

2000

24%

17%

Chicago

32%

Rest of
Cook

59%

Rest of
...
Poverty has spread beyond older, inner-ring suburbs
Poverty has spread beyond older, inner-ring suburbs
Chicago’s urban and suburban poor are similar in many ways
Share of urban poor
Share of suburban poor
50%
44%

38%
35%

44...
Several factors drive suburban poverty in the Chicago region

Population Change

Job Location

Immigration

Housing

Regio...
Overall population has grown much faster in the suburbs

8.3%

Cities
Suburbs

-4.5%
Percent Change in Population,
Chicago...
Immigration is contributing to growth in suburban poverty

81%

19%

Foreign-born
population

Native-born
population

Cont...
Affordable housing is spreading to Chicago’s suburbs

160,188

99,211

2000

2008

Housing Voucher Recipients
in Suburbs
S...
Most subprime lending and foreclosures were suburban

68%

70%

Subprime Loans

Loans in
Foreclosure or
Lost

Share of 200...
Jobs sprawl is high in the Chicago region

68%

67%

2000

2010

Share of Chicago Region Jobs
Located 10 to 35 Miles
from ...
The economic downturn left many unemployed in the
suburbs
287,032

168,798

Dec. 2007

Source: Brookings Institution analy...
Suburban poverty brings added challenges

Transit Access

Limited Philanthropic Resources

Strained Local Services

Change...
Suburban commuters have less access to transit

100%
91%

City

Suburbs

Share of Low-Income
Neighborhoods with Transit St...
Suburban commuters with transit can’t reach as many jobs

38%

13%

City

Source: Tomer, Kneebone, Puentes, and Berube, “M...
Nonprofits are present in Chicago’s suburbs

1.42

1.04
0.86

Chicago

Rest of Cook

Rest of IL metro

Number of Registere...
But suburban nonprofits are considerably smaller

$938

$617
$506

Chicago

Rest of Cook

Rest of IL metro

Nonprofit Huma...
Philanthropic support for suburban organizations is limited

$68

$2
City

Suburbs

Human Services, Housing, and
Workforce...
Schools are seeing low-income populations multiply

27%

5%

City

Source: Brookings analysis of GreatSchools data

Suburb...
Low-income suburban students attend schools with belowaverage test scores

59%

39%

Middle- or highincome student

Low-in...
Poverty is not distributing evenly across Chicago’s suburbs
Below Average Poverty Rate Growth

Carol Stream

Above Average...
2

Current policies are not aligned
to this new geography
The legacy system of place-based anti-poverty programs does not
map easily onto the suburban landscape
$82 billion
81 fede...
Suburbs face additional challenges

Lack of Capacity

Extensive Fragmentation

Inflexible, Unreliable Funding
Chicago’s south suburbs encountered these challenges during
the housing crisis

Cook
County
Chicago’s south suburbs encountered these challenges during
the housing crisis

Cook
County

19 communities
submitted a
jo...
Chicago’s south suburbs encountered these challenges during
the housing crisis

Cook
County

11 municipalities
received
in...
3

We need a new agenda for
metropolitan opportunity
Yet innovators across the country are finding creative
ways to navigate this system
Achieve Scale
IFF
•

•
•

Grew from a $2.7 million loan fund to a
65-person organization with assets totaling $240
million...
Collaborate and Integrate
Chicago Southland Housing and Community
Development Collaborative
•
•
•

Represents 23 municipal...
Fund strategically
Mortgage Resolution Fund
•
•
•

Uses a market-based, enterprise-level
approach
Leverages existing nonpr...
Creating a Metropolitan Opportunity Challenge could help bring
these solutions to scale in regions across the country

Fed...
You can read more about the Metropolitan Opportunity Challenge
and the contents of the book on our new website

www.Confro...
The website provides a host of helpful resources:
Profiles of the top 100 metros

Tips for taking action

Case studies of ...
Questions
• What are the major challenges you perceive to
grantmaking in the suburbs?
• Who are the “quarterbacks” in this...
aberube@brookings.edu
ekneebone@brookings.edu
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  1. 1. Confronting Suburban Poverty Challenges and Directions for the Chicago Region Elizabeth Kneebone and Alan Berube Brookings Institution
  2. 2. 1 The geography of poverty and opportunity has changed 2 Current policies are not aligned to this new geography 3 We need a new agenda for metropolitan opportunity
  3. 3. 1 The geography of poverty and opportunity has changed
  4. 4. Today, more of the nation’s poor live in suburbs than in cities 18,000,000 16,000,000 14,000,000 12,000,000 10,000,000 8,000,000 6,000,000 4,000,000 2,000,000 1970 1980 1990 Poor Individuals in Suburbs 2000 Poor Individuals in Cities Number in poverty, central cities versus suburbs, 1970-2012. Source: Brookings analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data 2012
  5. 5. In the Chicago region, the share of poor residents in the suburbs climbed to 52 percent in 2012 800,000 700,000 600,000 500,000 400,000 300,000 200,000 100,000 0 1970 1980 Poor Individuals in Suburbs 1990 2000 Poor Individuals in Cities Number in poverty, central cities versus suburbs, 1970-2012. Source: Brookings analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data 2012
  6. 6. One-third of the region’s poor live outside Cook County 2007-11 2000 24% 17% Chicago 32% Rest of Cook 59% Rest of metro 48% 20%
  7. 7. Poverty has spread beyond older, inner-ring suburbs
  8. 8. Poverty has spread beyond older, inner-ring suburbs
  9. 9. Chicago’s urban and suburban poor are similar in many ways Share of urban poor Share of suburban poor 50% 44% 38% 35% 44% 44% 37% 34% 26% 22% 19% 16% Foreign born White nonHispanic Source: Brookings Institution analysis of ACS data Under 18 Female HH with kids Deep poverty HS dropout
  10. 10. Several factors drive suburban poverty in the Chicago region Population Change Job Location Immigration Housing Regional Economy
  11. 11. Overall population has grown much faster in the suburbs 8.3% Cities Suburbs -4.5% Percent Change in Population, Chicago Region, 2000 to 2010 Source: Brookings Institution analysis of ACS and Decennial Census data
  12. 12. Immigration is contributing to growth in suburban poverty 81% 19% Foreign-born population Native-born population Contribution to Growth in Suburban Poor Population, 2000 to 2009 Source: Robert Suro, Jill Wilson, and Audrey Singer “Immigration and Poverty in America's Suburbs”
  13. 13. Affordable housing is spreading to Chicago’s suburbs 160,188 99,211 2000 2008 Housing Voucher Recipients in Suburbs Source: Brookings Institution analysis of HUD “Picture of Subsidized Housing” data
  14. 14. Most subprime lending and foreclosures were suburban 68% 70% Subprime Loans Loans in Foreclosure or Lost Share of 2004-08 Loans in Suburbs, Chicago Region Source: Chris Shildt, Naomi Cytron, Elizabeth Kneebone and Carolina Reid, “The Subprime Crisis in Suburbia: Exploring the Links between Foreclosures and Suburban Poverty”
  15. 15. Jobs sprawl is high in the Chicago region 68% 67% 2000 2010 Share of Chicago Region Jobs Located 10 to 35 Miles from Downtown Source: Elizabeth Kneebone, “Job Sprawl Stalls: The Great Recession and Metropolitan Employment Location”
  16. 16. The economic downturn left many unemployed in the suburbs 287,032 168,798 Dec. 2007 Source: Brookings Institution analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics LAUS data Dec. 2010 Number of Suburban Unemployed, Chicago Region
  17. 17. Suburban poverty brings added challenges Transit Access Limited Philanthropic Resources Strained Local Services Change in School Populations
  18. 18. Suburban commuters have less access to transit 100% 91% City Suburbs Share of Low-Income Neighborhoods with Transit Stop Nearby, Chicago Region Source: Tomer, Kneebone, Puentes, and Berube, “Missed Opportunity” (Brookings, 2011)
  19. 19. Suburban commuters with transit can’t reach as many jobs 38% 13% City Source: Tomer, Kneebone, Puentes, and Berube, “Missed Opportunity” (Brookings, 2011) Suburbs Share of Chicago Region Jobs Accessible to Low-income Neighborhoods within 90 Minutes via Transit
  20. 20. Nonprofits are present in Chicago’s suburbs 1.42 1.04 0.86 Chicago Rest of Cook Rest of IL metro Number of Registered Nonprofit Social Service Organizations per Poor Individual, 2007 Source: Alllard and Roth, “Strained Suburbs: The Social Service Challenges of Rising Suburban Poverty,” (2010)
  21. 21. But suburban nonprofits are considerably smaller $938 $617 $506 Chicago Rest of Cook Rest of IL metro Nonprofit Human Services Revenue per Poor Individual, 2007 Source: Alllard and Roth, “Strained Suburbs: The Social Service Challenges of Rising Suburban Poverty,” (2010)
  22. 22. Philanthropic support for suburban organizations is limited $68 $2 City Suburbs Human Services, Housing, and Workforce Training Grant Dollars per Poor Person, Chicago Metro Area, 2007 Source: Reckhow and Weir, “Building a Stronger Regional Safety Net” (Brookings, 2012)
  23. 23. Schools are seeing low-income populations multiply 27% 5% City Source: Brookings analysis of GreatSchools data Suburbs Percent Change in Number of Students Enrolled in Free and Reduced Price Lunch, Chicago Region, 2005-06 to 2009-10
  24. 24. Low-income suburban students attend schools with belowaverage test scores 59% 39% Middle- or highincome student Low-income student Average School-Wide Proficiency Ranking Statewide, Chicago Suburban Students, 2009-10
  25. 25. Poverty is not distributing evenly across Chicago’s suburbs Below Average Poverty Rate Growth Carol Stream Above Average Poverty Rate Growth Berwyn Above Average Poor Population Growth Below Average Poor Population Growth Beecher Harvey
  26. 26. 2 Current policies are not aligned to this new geography
  27. 27. The legacy system of place-based anti-poverty programs does not map easily onto the suburban landscape $82 billion 81 federal programs 10 agencies
  28. 28. Suburbs face additional challenges Lack of Capacity Extensive Fragmentation Inflexible, Unreliable Funding
  29. 29. Chicago’s south suburbs encountered these challenges during the housing crisis Cook County
  30. 30. Chicago’s south suburbs encountered these challenges during the housing crisis Cook County 19 communities submitted a joint NSP application
  31. 31. Chicago’s south suburbs encountered these challenges during the housing crisis Cook County 11 municipalities received individual awards
  32. 32. 3 We need a new agenda for metropolitan opportunity
  33. 33. Yet innovators across the country are finding creative ways to navigate this system
  34. 34. Achieve Scale IFF • • • Grew from a $2.7 million loan fund to a 65-person organization with assets totaling $240 million and a loan portfolio of $187 million Serves five states in Midwest: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Missouri, and Wisconsin Able to play the role of researcher, lender, consultant, and/or developer depending on the needs of the community Improve systems and networks Promote high-performance organizations Support smart consolidation
  35. 35. Collaborate and Integrate Chicago Southland Housing and Community Development Collaborative • • • Represents 23 municipalities Continues to be supported by regional institutions and local funders Breaks down policy silos Identify and reduce barriers Reward collaborative approaches Catalyze regional capacity
  36. 36. Fund strategically Mortgage Resolution Fund • • • Uses a market-based, enterprise-level approach Leverages existing nonprofit expertise and private sector resources Focuses on measurable outcomes Commit to enterprise-level funding Promote tools that leverage public & private resources Develop consistent, comparable data sources
  37. 37. Creating a Metropolitan Opportunity Challenge could help bring these solutions to scale in regions across the country Federal Place-Based Anti-Poverty Programs $82 Billion; 81 Programs; 10 Agencies Re-purpose 5% : $4 billion
  38. 38. You can read more about the Metropolitan Opportunity Challenge and the contents of the book on our new website www.ConfrontingSuburbanPoverty.org
  39. 39. The website provides a host of helpful resources: Profiles of the top 100 metros Tips for taking action Case studies of innovators Video Infographic
  40. 40. Questions • What are the major challenges you perceive to grantmaking in the suburbs? • Who are the “quarterbacks” in this region? What barriers do they face to scale? • Are there regional (or sub-regional) tables at which funders come together to collaborate? • How can philanthropy and government (federal, state, county, municipal) help each other to confront suburban poverty in the region? • What further research/advocacy is needed to help move these ideas forward?
  41. 41. aberube@brookings.edu ekneebone@brookings.edu

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