Financial Security
Household Receiving Temporary Assistance


Households Receiving Temporary Assistance

What does this measure?

The number of households that received any public assistance or welfare payments in the past 12 months, expressed as a percentage of total households.

Why is this important?

This measure represents the number of households which rely upon government support to meet their basic needs.

How is our region doing?

In 2014-18, 2.1% of MetroWest households received public assistance income. This was the same rate as in 2000, but below the state (2.7%) and national rates (2.5%). Framingham (2.9%) had the highest rate in MetroWest in 2014-18.

Notes about the data

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) is a federally funded program administered at the state level, meaning that eligibility requirements vary from state to state. ACS does not ask specifically which program provides the income, although TANF is the primary source of public assistance funds. Families are eligible for TANF benefits for up to 60 months, although most receive assistance for shorter periods of time.

Studies have found that national survey estimates (including the ACS) of enrollment in public benefit programs tend to underestimate the true rate due to underreporting by participants, when compared with state-level administrative data. Underreporting can occur for a variety of reasons, including the social stigma of program participation and participants' confusion about the source of the services they receive. For these reasons, the estimates reported above should be considered a lower bound of the true estimate.

Households Receiving Temporary Assistance
United States3.4%2.8%2.5%
Acton town, Middlesex County0.8%2.5%***1.4%**
Ashland town, Middlesex County1.1%1.5%***1.2%***
Bedford town, Middlesex County1.2%2.3%***1.0%***
Bellingham town, Norfolk County1.8%1.6%***2.0%***
Boxborough town, Middlesex County0.4%1.8%***1.0%***
Carlisle town, Middlesex County0.0%1.1%***0.0%***
Concord town, Middlesex County0.6%0.8%***1.1%***
Dedham town, Norfolk County1.0%1.4%***1.4%**
Dover town, Norfolk County0.2%0.4%***0.5%***
Framingham city, Middlesex County2.4%3.4%*2.9%*
Franklin town, Norfolk County1.7%**0.9%***
Groton town, Middlesex County0.8%0.0%***2.6%***
Harvard town, Worcester County0.0%1.9%***0.6%***
Holliston town, Middlesex County0.9%1.1%***0.9%***
Hopkinton town, Middlesex County0.5%0.6%***1.4%***
Hudson town, Middlesex County2.6%1.9%**0.9%***
Lexington town, Middlesex County0.8%1.5%***1.9%**
Lincoln town, Middlesex County0.6%1.0%***1.4%***
Littleton town, Middlesex County1.6%2.8%***0.4%***
Marlborough city, Middlesex County2.0%1.3%***2.0%**
Maynard town, Middlesex County2.3%2.2%***1.8%***
Medfield town, Norfolk County0.1%0.6%***1.3%***
Medway town, Norfolk County0.9%1.1%***0.6%***
Milford town, Worcester County2.9%1.8%**2.3%**
Millis town, Norfolk County1.8%2.6%***0.5%***
Natick town, Middlesex County0.9%1.0%**1.1%**
Needham town, Norfolk County1.0%1.1%***1.3%***
Sherborn town, Middlesex County0.5%0.6%***0.0%***
Southborough town, Worcester County0.4%0.7%***1.5%***
Stow town, Middlesex County0.5%0.0%***0.6%***
Sudbury town, Middlesex County0.6%1.5%***1.1%***
Walpole town, Norfolk County0.4%2.0%***1.6%***
Waltham city, Middlesex County1.9%2.1%*1.0%**
Wayland town, Middlesex County0.7%1.1%***1.0%***
Wellesley town, Norfolk County1.1%1.0%***1.2%***
Westborough town, Worcester County0.4%1.2%***0.4%***
Westford town, Middlesex County0.5%1.8%***1.5%***
Weston town, Middlesex County0.1%0.3%***1.6%***
Westwood town, Norfolk County0.6%0.5%***1.6%***

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%.

Number of Households Receiving Temporary Assistance
United States3,629,7323,255,2132,939,063
Acton town, Middlesex County58209***128**
Ashland town, Middlesex County6599***82***
Bedford town, Middlesex County56115***50***
Bellingham town, Norfolk County10096***128***
Boxborough town, Middlesex County839***22***
Carlisle town, Middlesex County020***0***
Concord town, Middlesex County3851***71***
Dedham town, Norfolk County87133***139**
Dover town, Norfolk County48***10***
Framingham city, Middlesex County616899*813*
Franklin town, Norfolk County185**107***
Groton town, Middlesex County270***105***
Harvard town, Worcester County036***12***
Holliston town, Middlesex County4256***46***
Hopkinton town, Middlesex County2231***83***
Hudson town, Middlesex County180149**66***
Lexington town, Middlesex County85168***225**
Lincoln town, Middlesex County1723***37***
Littleton town, Middlesex County4897***15***
Marlborough city, Middlesex County292206***320**
Maynard town, Middlesex County9797***77***
Medfield town, Norfolk County426***53***
Medway town, Norfolk County3947***29***
Milford town, Worcester County307187**255**
Millis town, Norfolk County5577***16***
Natick town, Middlesex County118143**163**
Needham town, Norfolk County110118***135***
Sherborn town, Middlesex County78***0***
Southborough town, Worcester County1322***53***
Stow town, Middlesex County110***15***
Sudbury town, Middlesex County3487***71***
Walpole town, Norfolk County32170***142***
Waltham city, Middlesex County444492*231**
Wayland town, Middlesex County3156***48***
Wellesley town, Norfolk County9287***103***
Westborough town, Worcester County2882***28***
Westford town, Middlesex County36133***129***
Weston town, Middlesex County512***62***
Westwood town, Norfolk County3329***87***

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%.

Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Disengaged Youth Not Applicable
Reports of Domestic Violence Not Applicable
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Not Applicable
Households Without Vehicles Not Applicable
Means of Transportation to Work Not Applicable
Average Travel Time to Work Not Applicable
Households With Internet Access Not Applicable
Voter Participation Rate Not Applicable
Average Charitable Contribution Not Applicable
Protected Land Not Applicable
Drug Poisoning Mortality Rate Not Applicable
Crimes Against People Not Applicable
Incarceration Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Total Population Not Applicable
Change in Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Foreign-Born Population Not Applicable
Language Diversity Not Applicable
Population by Age Not Applicable
Change in Population by Age/Gender Not Applicable
Seniors Living Alone Not Applicable
People with Disabilities Not Applicable
Change in Total Jobs by Sector Not Applicable
Unemployment Rate Not Applicable
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
High-Tech Jobs Not Applicable
Female to Male Earnings Ratio Not Applicable
Prekindergarten Participation Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 3 English, by Student Subgroup Not Applicable
Chronically Absent Students Not Applicable
High School Cohort Graduation Rate by Student Group Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty, by Education Level Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Household Receiving Temporary Assistance Not Applicable
Participation in Food Assistance by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Median Household Income Not Applicable
Median Household Income, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Living Wage Not Applicable
80/20 Income Ratio Not Applicable
Access to Financial Services, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Homeownership Not Applicable
Cost of Rent Not Applicable
Homelessness Not Applicable