Percentage of households led by a single mother with children under age 18 living in the household in the U.S. in 2017, by state*

Percentage of single mother households in the U.S. 2017, by state This graph shows the Percentage of households led by a female householder with no spouse present with own children under 18 years living in the household in the U.S. in 2017, by state. In 2017, about 7.82 percent of Californian households were single mother households with at least one child.
Additional information on single mother households and poverty in the United States

For most single mothers a constant battle persists between finding the time and energy to raise their children and the demands of working to supply an income to house and feed their families. The pressures of a single income and the high costs of childcare mean that the risk of poverty for these families is a tragic reality. Comparison of the overall United States poverty rate since 1990 with that of the poverty rate for families with a female householder shows that poverty is much more prevalent in the later. In 2014, while the overall rate was at 14.8 percent, the rate of poverty for single mother families was 30.6 percent. Moreover, the degree of fluctuation was much lower for single female household families suggesting the rate of poverty for these groups is less affected by economic conditions.
The sharp rise in the number of children living with a single mother or single father in the United States from 1970 to 2015 suggests more must be done to ensure that families in such situations are able to avoid poverty. Moreover, attention should also be placed on overall racial income inequality given the higher rate of poverty for Hispanic single mother families than their white or Asian counterparts.
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Percentage of households
Mississippi 11.24%
Louisiana 10.46%
District of Columbia 9.38%
Texas 9.16%
Kentucky 9.15%
Arkansas 9.13%
Georgia 9.07%
Alabama 8.95%
South Carolina 8.93%
Ohio 8.83%
New Mexico 8.77%
Alaska 8.49%
North Carolina 8.48%
New York 8.23%
Connecticut 8.2%
Maryland 8.03%
Missouri 7.97%
Florida 7.96%
California 7.82%
U.S. average7.76%
Wisconsin 7.62%
Illinois 7.6%
Nebraska 7.47%
Tennessee 7.44%
Delaware 7.42%
Nevada 7.37%
Massachusetts 7.31%
Indiana 7.3%
Pennsylvania 7.24%
Michigan 7.18%
Rhode Island 7.06%
Arizona 6.98%
South Dakota 6.9%
Oklahoma 6.89%
Virginia 6.87%
Oregon 6.78%
Wyoming 6.72%
Kansas 6.61%
West Virginia 6.31%
Hawaii 6.3%
North Dakota 6.23%
Washington 6.23%
Colorado 5.99%
New Jersey 5.9%
Vermont 5.86%
New Hampshire 5.83%
Iowa 5.8%
Maine 5.79%
Minnesota 5.29%
Idaho 5.19%
Montana 4.61%
Utah 4.11%
Percentage of households
Mississippi 11.24%
Louisiana 10.46%
District of Columbia 9.38%
Texas 9.16%
Kentucky 9.15%
Arkansas 9.13%
Georgia 9.07%
Alabama 8.95%
South Carolina 8.93%
Ohio 8.83%
New Mexico 8.77%
Alaska 8.49%
North Carolina 8.48%
New York 8.23%
Connecticut 8.2%
Maryland 8.03%
Missouri 7.97%
Florida 7.96%
California 7.82%
U.S. average7.76%
Wisconsin 7.62%
Illinois 7.6%
Nebraska 7.47%
Tennessee 7.44%
Delaware 7.42%
Nevada 7.37%
Massachusetts 7.31%
Indiana 7.3%
Pennsylvania 7.24%
Michigan 7.18%
Rhode Island 7.06%
Arizona 6.98%
South Dakota 6.9%
Oklahoma 6.89%
Virginia 6.87%
Oregon 6.78%
Wyoming 6.72%
Kansas 6.61%
West Virginia 6.31%
Hawaii 6.3%
North Dakota 6.23%
Washington 6.23%
Colorado 5.99%
New Jersey 5.9%
Vermont 5.86%
New Hampshire 5.83%
Iowa 5.8%
Maine 5.79%
Minnesota 5.29%
Idaho 5.19%
Montana 4.61%
Utah 4.11%
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This graph shows the Percentage of households led by a female householder with no spouse present with own children under 18 years living in the household in the U.S. in 2017, by state. In 2017, about 7.82 percent of Californian households were single mother households with at least one child.
Additional information on single mother households and poverty in the United States

For most single mothers a constant battle persists between finding the time and energy to raise their children and the demands of working to supply an income to house and feed their families. The pressures of a single income and the high costs of childcare mean that the risk of poverty for these families is a tragic reality. Comparison of the overall United States poverty rate since 1990 with that of the poverty rate for families with a female householder shows that poverty is much more prevalent in the later. In 2014, while the overall rate was at 14.8 percent, the rate of poverty for single mother families was 30.6 percent. Moreover, the degree of fluctuation was much lower for single female household families suggesting the rate of poverty for these groups is less affected by economic conditions.
The sharp rise in the number of children living with a single mother or single father in the United States from 1970 to 2015 suggests more must be done to ensure that families in such situations are able to avoid poverty. Moreover, attention should also be placed on overall racial income inequality given the higher rate of poverty for Hispanic single mother families than their white or Asian counterparts.
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Release date
September 2017
Region
United States
Survey time period
2016
Supplementary notes
* Female family householders with no spouse present with own children under 18 years living in the household.

According to the definition by the U.S. Census Bureau a household "includes all of the people who occupy a housing unit. One person in each household is designated as the “householder.” In most cases, this is the person, or one of the people, in whose name the home is owned, being bought, or rented."

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