United Ways of the Pacific Northwest Study of Financial Hardship - ALICE

ALICE, a United Way acronym which stands for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed, represents the growing number of individuals and families who are working, but are unable to afford the basic necessities of housing, food, child care, health care, and transportation. ALICE may be your relative, friend, colleague, or neighbor, or you might be ALICE. ALICE may also be your health care provider, teacher, retail clerk, sanitation worker, and others. ALICE workers are the backbone of our economy, with the pandemic making it crystal clear just how much we need them.

Through a series of standardized measurements, United Way is quantifying the households in each state that are struggling financially, and the reasons why. These measurements provide a broader picture of financial insecurity than traditional federal poverty guidelines. This is the fifth time that we have studied and reported on ALICE in the Pacific Northwest.

Why ALICE Matters

United For ALICE is a driver of innovation, shining a light on the challenges ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) households face and finding collaborative solutions. Through a standardized methodology that assesses the cost of living in every county, this project provides a comprehensive measure of financial hardship across the U.S. Equipped with this data, ALICE partners convene, advocate, and innovate in their local communities to highlight the issues faced by ALICE households and to generate solutions that promote financial stability.

This grassroots ALICE movement, led by United Way of Northern New Jersey, has spread to half of U.S. states and the District of Columbia and includes United Ways, corporations, nonprofits, and foundations in Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawai‘i, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Washington, D.C., West Virginia and Wisconsin. For more information, visit: UnitedForALICE.org.

ALICE in the Crosscurrents: 2024 Update | An Update on Financial Hardship across the Pacific Northwest

In 2022, financial hardship continued to be shaped by the conflicting economic forces of the pandemic. Hardship remained substantially undercounted by official measures, and longstanding disparities in hardship by age, race/ethnicity, and household type persisted. These powerful crosscurrents — COVID-19, inflation, wage growth, and the expansion and expiration of pandemic public assistance — impacted how many households were below the ALICE Threshold of Financial Survival.

With the latest data from the American Community Survey (2022), the U.S. Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey (2023), and the Federal Reserve Board’s Survey of Household Economics and Decisionmaking (SHED) (2022), this Update highlights the conflicting forces that continue to present opportunities for, and barriers to, financial stability.

For the ALICE in the Crosscurrents: 2024 Update state specific reports, click on the images below:

Idaho interactive site and report update can be found at www.UnitedForALICE.org/Idaho.

For the Idaho press release, CLICK HERE.

 Oregon interactive site and report update can be found at www.UnitedForALICE.org/Oregon.

For the Oregon press release, CLICK HERE.


Washington interactive site and report update can be found at www.UnitedForALICE.org/Washington.

For the WA press release, CLICK HERE.

Previous versions of the study can also be found on the website for each state.  

Visit UnitedforALICE.org to learn more about the national study. 

LISTEN IN on a recent segment featuring United Ways of the Pacific Northwest President & CEO, Jim Cooper, talking about ALICE households in Southern Oregon and why so many struggle to make ends meet.


ALICE Economic Viability Dashboard | Maps And Data (unitedforalice.org)

The ALICE Economic Viability Dashboard reveals the economic and community conditions of people who are struggling financially — those below the ALICE Threshold. By studying ALICE households as well as those in poverty, United For ALICE research shows the true extent of financial hardship across the country. The ALICE Economic Viability Dashboard builds on this research, exploring why so many households are struggling, with new data on ALICE work, housing, and community resources.

ALICE in Focus Series | Children, People with Disabilities, and Veterans

Since 2009, United For ALICE has shed light on the everyday struggles of households that are ALICE. The ALICE in Focus Research Series takes this data to a new level, spotlighting the struggles of people in specific ALICE populations, including children, people with disabilities, and military veterans. 

The ALICE in Focus dashboards and research briefs allow you to break down the data on these groups by race/ethnicity, disability status, living arrangements, number of workers in the household, and much more. It's a new lens on specific populations in financial hardship — with a level of detail that can help drive meaningful change.

ALICE in Focus: Children in Financial Hardship 
(April 2022)

ALICE in Focus: Financial Hardship Among People With Disabilities
(July 2022)

ALICE in Focus: Veterans in Financial Hardship
(November 2022)

Pacific Northwest ALICE in the Crosscurrents Sponsors

Special thanks to the following sponsors for helping to bring the ALICE Report to the Pacific Northwest states of Washington, Oregon, and Idaho.