The ranks of the US poor have grown dramatically in the last four years, according to an analysis of census data reported today in the New York Times.  

Not that this should come as a shock to anyone, but now, with numbers, the awful assumption is fact. Nationwide, more than half of non-rural poor now live in suburban communities, not cities.

As many cities have flourished, suburban communities have suffered. Residents have lost jobs, lost their ability to make mortgage payments, keep their cars running and pay high school taxes. At the same time, satellite communities attracted the poor from  urban centers, as gentrification pushed them further and further away from social services.  

This dramatic population shift occurred between 2007 and 2010, during the deepest part of the recession, while states struggled to keep basic services operating and federal funding shrunk, especially when it came to programs that help the poor.

What makes this situation especially serious is the lack of public transportation found in many outlying areas, by design. Without an efficient way to deliver services,  communities struggle to help those in need.  

Here’s the whole story: