Facts about Single Parenting Reported from the US Census

Facts about Single Parenting ...

According to results from the 2000 Census Bureau, there are approximately thirteen and one-half million single parents with custody of over twenty million children (under the age of twenty-one) whose other parent does not live with them.The number of married couples raising their children together has decreased significantly from forty percent in 1970 to 24 percent in 2000 due in part to the increasing divorce rate and the fact that some parents of children may never marry in the first place. Single parent households are on the rise (increasing from nine percent in 1990 to sixteen percent in the year 2000). If you are a single parent, it may be comforting to know you are not alone.

More Facts about Single Parenting

  • Births to unmarried women and the ratio of never-married parents has increased. In fact, one-third of custodial mothers has never married the father to their child.
  • There were seven million families headed up by single mothers in 1990 and twenty million families in 2000. Today, over 15 million children under the age of fifteen live with single mothers, while some 3 million live with single fathers.
  • Almost half of families led by single mothers have more than one child.
  • Single fathers are more likely to live with another adult (33%) than single mothers (11%).
  • About one-quarter of children under the age of 21 do not live with both their parents.
  • Divorce rates hit a plateau in the 1990s, so the increasing numbers of children living with just one parent must be due to the fact that more parents are not getting married before or after having a child.
  • There has been an increase in the number of married parents who divorce.
  • Facts about single parenting: almost half of single parent male families and 44% of female-led families live in suburban areas.
  • 58% of male-led families and 49% of female-led families currently own or are in the process of buying their own homes.
  • Facts on single parenting: the ratio of custodial parents in year-round, full-time jobs grew from 45% to 54%. Thirty-percent of these parents work part-time.
  • Custodial mothers more often work part-time.
  • Almost 90% of single fathers work, while 77% of single mothers work.
  • The numbers of single parent families living below the poverty line decreased from 33% in 1993 to 26.1% in 2000.
  • The percentage of single mother families living in poverty fell from 36.8% in 1993 to 28.7% in 2000, but is 2.5 times the rate of single fathers. (The poverty rate for married families is 6.3%.)
  • The rate of participation in public assistance programs decreased from 40 percent to 30% for custodial parents.
  • About 60% of custodial parents have child support agreements. 62% of single mothers have agreements while 39.2% of single fathers have agreements.
  • About 75% of custodial parents receive child support.
  • More parents are making their child support payments up from 36.9% in 1993 to 46.2% in 2000.
  • Income is higher and poverty is lower for single parents receiving child support.
  • The average family income for single custodial parents is just under $30,000 per year.
  • Child support income is received more regularly with custodial parents who have child support agreements.
  • Half of custodial parents who do not have child support agreements also do not receive child support payments.
  • Custodial mothers received an average of $3800 in 1999, those receiving full child support averaged $4900.
  • More than half of child support awards include provisions for health insurance.
  • 60% of all custodial parents receive non-cash support.
  • More than five and one-half million children live with their grandparents.

Source for Facts on Single Parenting

2000 U.S. Census Bureau

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