You know Alice, you’ve seen her before. She may be a family member, friend or even your next door neighbor. Alice can be a person either male or female; don’t let the name fool you. The name Alice is not gender specific. The name represents a population of people in NJ; ALICE is an acronym for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, yet Employed. The ALICE population are hard working individuals who are just one paycheck away from a financial crisis.
Who makes up the ALICE population?
Large portions of the ALICE population were once six figure earners in corporate America, but with constant job downsizing and restructuring. These six figure earners are unable to replace their high incomes and have resorted to low wage jobs to make ends for their families. There are also other ALICE individuals who don’t present the once six figure earning population, these individuals may be a recent grad who is working and paying off tuition debt; a young family struggling to pay for child care so they can work; the underemployed working less than full-time and without benefits; active duty military personnel; a family caregiver; or a senior on a fixed income struggling with health issues.
Where does the ALICE population live?
Although the ALICE population have low incomes and are making ends meet with what they have; they do not reside in poverty stricken or low income areas of NJ. These individuals reside in Morris County NJ, which has the highest cost of housing in New Jersey. Some ALICE residents either own their home without a mortgage (which are older residents) or housing makes up 30 percent of their household budget. Many ALICE residents are renters.
Why do the ALICE population struggle?
- ALICE residents incomes are falling behind the cost of living
- ALICE residents work in jobs that are low paying
- Rising housing costs in NJ
- ALICE residents struggle to pay for essentials and have no savings
To learn more about the ALICE population go to United Way of NNJ.
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