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New Census Figures Show Widening Wealth Disparity, Analyst Says


Aired 4/19/09

The median household income in San Diego County is up just over 2 percent. But the latest figures from the U.S. Census Bureau released today, show the average wage earned by an individual, full-time worker has gone down. KPBS reporter Alison St John explains.

The latest figures suggests more people per household are going to work, because the value of individual earnings has fallen almost 4 percent.

Susan Deurkson is with the Center on Policy Initiatives , a think tank on issues affecting working families. She says the new data also shows the income gap between rich and poor continues to creep wider.

Deurkson : The households in the county earning the top 20 percent of income are taking home half of all the income made in the county, while the lowest fifth get less than 4 percent of all the income. That is a big gap between rich and poor that you do see across the country.

Almost one million people work full time, year-round in San Diego County. One in five of them earned less than $25,000 a year.

Alison St John KPBS News.

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