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Overlooked and Undercounted 2022

Developing strategies to ensure Colorado households reach economic security requires data that defines how much is enough and which households are struggling. The Self-Sufficiency Standard is a realistic, geographically specific, and family composition-specific measure of income adequacy, and thus a more accurate alternative to the official poverty measure. Over the last 23 years, calculation of the Self-Sufficiency Standard has documented the continuing increase in the real cost of living, illuminating the economic crunch experienced by so many families today.

Led by Self-Sufficiency Standard lead researcher and author Annie Kucklick, the University of Washington School of Social Work produces the Self-Sufficiency Standard and the accompanying “Overlooked and Undercounted” reports on behalf of Colorado Center on Law and Policy. Based on the 2019 data, this edition of “Overlooked and Undercounted” reveals which Colorado families were struggling to make ends meet — even before the start of the pandemic. Using the 2019 Self-Sufficiency Standard for Colorado, the costs (housing, child care, health care, transportation, taxes and tax credits, and miscellaneous expenses) are representative of 2019 data, or have been inflated to 2019 costs. The complete Self-Sufficiency Standard for Colorado will be released later this year.

Download the report (pdf).


Date added

March 14, 2022

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