Research Center • West Virginia

We all know people who are ALICEAsset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed. ALICE workers educate our children, keep us healthy, and make our quality of life possible, yet do not earn enough to support their own families. ALICE households are forced to make tough choices, such as deciding between quality child care or paying the rent, which have long-term consequences not only for ALICE, but for all.

In order to better understand this growing population, United For ALICE provides a framework, language, statistics, and tools that community stakeholders can use to inform policy and drive innovation. The Research Center is the hub of — a one-stop source for exploring the latest ALICE data, on a national scale down to the local level in our partner states. Use the tabs below to navigate the Research Center.

West Virginia • 2019 State Overview

Between 2007 and 2019, West Virginia experienced steady economic improvements according to traditional measures. Unemployment in the state, as well as across the U.S., fell to historic lows, GDP grew, and wages rose slightly. Yet in 2019, 45% of households still struggled to make ends meet. While 17% of these struggling households were living below the Federal Poverty Level (FPL), another 28% were ALICE: Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed. These households earned above the FPL, but not enough to afford basic household necessities.

The ALICE measures show three critical trends at the state level:

The cost of living is increasing for ALICE households.
The cost of household essentials (housing, child care, food, transportation, health care, a smart phone plan, and taxes) is rising faster than the cost of other goods and services.
Worker vulnerability is growing while wages stagnate.
Growth is concentrated in low-wage jobs; there have been minimal increases in wages; and fluctuations in job hours, schedules, and access to benefits make it harder for workers to budget and plan.
The number of ALICE households is on the rise.
While the number of households in poverty has stayed relatively flat from 2007 to 2019, the number of ALICE households has continued to increase as a result of rising costs and stagnant wages.

ALICE and Poverty in West Virginia in 2019

Explore the map and figures below to learn more about ALICE in the state. The map is shaded to show the percentage of households that are below the ALICE Threshold (BAT) for different types. The darker the blue, the higher the percentage. To learn more about ALICE households with children and ALICE households by age and race/ethnicity, visit the Demographics page.

Note: To ensure accuracy and confidentiality, household groups with less than 100 households are not displayed (shown in grey). The categories shown in the map and table are overlapping; households are included in all applicable groups.

Household Type, West Virginia, 2019

Below ALICE Threshold
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Household Type: ALL Households
CountyHouseholds% Below ALICE Threshold

ALICE and Poverty in West Virginia Over Time

Households by Income, West Virginia, 2010-2019

These figures show change over time in the number of ALICE and poverty-level households for the state or the county/counties selected in the map above.


Households by Income, West Virginia, 2010-2019