Rocky Ford, a town in Otero County, Colorado, has been identified as the poorest town in the state. According to a 2022 analysis by 24/7 Wall St., Rocky Ford has the lowest median household income in Colorado, with families earning an average of just $29,822 per year. This is significantly lower than the statewide median household income of $80,184.
Rocky Ford also has a high poverty rate, with over 30% of residents living below the poverty line. The poverty rate in Rocky Ford is 31.9%, compared to the statewide poverty rate of 9.6%. There are a number of factors that contribute to Rocky Ford’s high poverty rate.
Here Are Some Factors That Contribute To Rocky Ford Being Named The Poorest Town In Colorado:
Declining economic opportunities: Rocky Ford’s economy has been hit hard by the decline of the agriculture industry, which has been a major employer in the town for many years. As the agriculture industry has shrunk, so too have job opportunities in Rocky Ford.
High cost of living: The cost of living in Rocky Ford is relatively high, especially when compared to the median household income. This makes it difficult for many residents to make ends meet.
Lack of access to education and training: Rocky Ford residents have limited access to education and training programs, which can make it difficult to find good-paying jobs.
High unemployment rate: Rocky Ford has a high unemployment rate, which means that many residents are struggling to find work.
Poverty cycle: Poverty can be a cycle, making it difficult for families to break out of. This is especially true in Rocky Ford, where there are few resources available to help families in need.
Limited access to healthcare: Rocky Ford has a limited number of healthcare providers, which can make it difficult for residents to access medical care. This can lead to health problems that can make it difficult to work and earn an income.
Lack of affordable housing: Rocky Ford has a shortage of affordable housing, which means that many residents are forced to spend a large portion of their income on rent or mortgage payments. This can make it difficult to afford other necessities, such as food and clothing.
High crime rate: Rocky Ford has a relatively high crime rate, which can make it a difficult place to live and work. This can discourage businesses from investing in the town and can make it difficult for residents to feel safe and secure.
Despite these challenges, there are a number of efforts underway to improve the economy and quality of life in Rocky Ford. The town is working to attract new businesses and industries, and is also investing in education and training programs to help residents improve their skills and find better jobs. Rocky Ford is a resilient community, and the people of Rocky Ford are working hard to improve their town. With continued investment and support, Rocky Ford has the potential to become a thriving community.