Key Terms

Household Survival Budget: The bare-minimum costs of basic necessities (housing, child care, food, transportation, health care, and a smartphone plan).

ALICE Threshold: The average income needed to afford the Household Survival Budget. Households below the ALICE Threshold include both ALICE and poverty-level households.

ALICE: Households with income above the Federal Poverty Level but below the basic cost of living.

Poverty: Households earning below the Federal Poverty Level

Total Households: The number of households as reported by the American Community Survey.

ALICE Legislative District Tool

ALICE Legislative District Tool

Exploring Financial Hardship by District

While the Federal Poverty Level is the basis for many public programs, looking at poverty alone excludes the 36.3 million households in the U.S. who are ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed), earning above the poverty level but below the basic cost of living in their communities.

This interactive tool helps policymakers and community stakeholders better understand how many households are actually struggling in their district.

How to Use This Tool

  • Select an ALICE Partner State
  • Select a district type (U.S. House of Representatives, State Legislative District – Lower Chamber, or State Legislative District – Upper Chamber).
  • Hover over the state map to find:
    • the district name/number
    • the percentage of households below the ALICE Threshold (Poverty + ALICE)
    • the number of poverty-level, ALICE, and above ALICE Threshold households in each district
  • Click on a district and scroll down to explore the data by race/ethnicity and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) utilization

Not sure where to look? Find your district by address or current location.

Why Does This Data Matter for ALICE?

Insufficient Income: When households can’t afford the basics, they are forced to make difficult choices and trade-offs every day — impossible decisions like whether to pay for prescriptions or keep enough food on the table. The larger the gap between income and expenses, the more extreme the decisions and the greater the risks to a family’s immediate health, safety, and financial stability.

Financial hardship not only affects individuals and families, but it also has a negative impact — economically and socially — on the wider community. Learn more in our online report, The Consequences of Insufficient Household Income.

Race/Ethnicity: Overall, the races and ethnicities of ALICE households mirror those of the total state population. Yet some groups still face economic and systemic barriers that leave them far more likely to live below the ALICE Threshold. Looking at ALICE data by race/ethnicity illuminates these substantial disparities.

SNAP Utilization: For a variety of reasons, public assistance does not reach all households that are struggling financially. While most households in poverty are eligible, ALICE households often earn too much to qualify for assistance. SNAP, as one of the largest assistance programs, provides an example of the gap between program eligibility/access and need.

Technical Details

Sources:ALICE Threshold, 2021; American Community Survey, 2021.

Redistricting and the 2020 Census: The districts shown in this tool reflect 2022 State Legislative District plans as submitted by the states to the U.S. Census Bureau,

Race/Ethnicity: All racial categories except Two or More Races are for one race alone. Race and ethnicity are overlapping categories; in this dashboard, the American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN), Asian, Black, Hawaiian (includes other Pacific Islanders), and Two or More Races groups may include Hispanic households. The White group includes only White, non-Hispanic households. The Hispanic group may include households of any race.