Chances are that if you’re poor in Charlotte, you’ll likely stay this way. A recent study on income mobility shows that climbing the economic ladder in places like Charlotte, is harder than in other cities across the country. Raleigh, Atlanta, Memphis, Indianapolis, Cincinnati and Columbus, Ohio also make the list of places where the poor will struggle to make it to middle class.
By contrast, New York, Boston, Salt Lake City, Pittsburgh, Seattle, California and Minnesota, offer far more upward economic movement.
In North Carolina, more and more poor people are living in big cities, like Charlotte. Mecklenburg County now has one of the highest concentration of poverty in the state. From 2005 to 2010 poverty levels in Mecklenburg County rose increased by 58 percent.
Factors that positively affect upward mobility? Two-parent households, better elementary and high schools, and engagement and civic and religious community groups.