From: Lock Haven Express
Two state senators visited the city recently to “hear from people who are in poverty and want out.”
State Sens. Art Haywood and Vincent Hughes, both Democrats from the Philadelphia area, made a stop in Lock Haven last Thursday part of a five-stop poverty listening tour across the state. Some 30 people and seven panelists from Central Pennsylvania attended the event at STEP Inc.’s Clinton County Community Center. Panelists came from across this region, including Williamsport, Lock Haven and Tioga County.
It was evident that at least part of the reason the tour stopped in Lock Haven is due to this area’s relatively high poverty rates. According to county health rankings via a noted Robert Wood Johnson Foundation-funded study, 20 percent of people 18 and under who live in Clinton County live in poverty. Up-to-date statistics can be found in the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey Five-Year Estimates.
Lock Haven’s population is 9,724, according to these estimates. When figuring the number of city residents living in poverty, the Census Bureau did not use people who live in institutions, like Susque-View. Once they are removed, the estimates show 3,310 city residents live in poverty.
That is a total of 42 percent of the population counted for these particular estimates. Those attending Thursday had compelling stories to tell, but Haywood cautioned that “it’s a mistake to just use our own idea of how we grew up and make decisions based on that, thinking it’s going to affect everyone else. There’s a lot of different experiences that we need to take into account.”