SAN JOSE (KCBS) — Despite reports of a stronger Silicon Valley economy and job market compared to the state and nation overall, aid organizations are reporting helping record numbers of low-income families in the area.

While U.S. Census Bureau reports the poverty rate in America stood unchanged last year at 15 percent, United Way Silicon Valley CEO Carole Leigh Hutton said being poor in the South Bay is relative and that it’s the worst place for those facing economic strife.

KCBS’ Mike Colgan Reports:

“The cost of living here has no relationship to the federal poverty level. The federal poverty level says a family of four can subsist on slightly more than $23,000 [annually],” Hutton said.

Hutton added that the poverty line in this area for a family of four is somewhere between $70,000 and $80,000.

Jay Pecot from Sacred Heart Community Service said the demand continues to grow when it comes to helping those in need.

“Almost one in four families [households] in this valley doesn’t make enough money to make ends meet and we know that 87 percent of those families are working families,” Pecot said.

Pecot said in August alone they served over 8,000 households food.

“That’s 8,000 children. What used to be a huge number for us; in one day of 500 families helping them out, now we see that a couple of times a month.”

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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