North Carolina counties in poverty.
Image source: Law.UNC.edu
While some American cities (and Americans) are recovering from the recession, many are still struggling in the aftermath. According to international financial news site 247WallSt.com, Salisbury, North Carolina is number five of 10 US cities where poverty is soaring. So how did Salisbury end up on this list and in the top 10?
Unemployment and Poverty Rates
As of August 2013, the unemployment rate in Salisbury is nearly two percentage points higher than the national average of 7.3 percent. The overall poverty rate in the US (the official definition of what is considered “poor”) is 15 percent and has been unchanged for the past year. In Salisbury, by comparison, the poverty rate is closer to nearly 30 percent. This is nearly double the national rate and almost 12 percentage points higher than North Carolina at large.
Salisbury is a city that is heavily reliant on manufacturing, which has taken a hit in recent decades. It wasn't unusual for those jobs to be the destination after high school, in lieu of college for many. This discourages higher education which can limit alternate opportunities. In addition to small textile mills, other manufacturing businesses in the area have gone out of business. At a recent Mayor’s coalition, Salisbury Mayor Paul Woodson admitted that the city needs new business.
NC unempoyment rates are persistently high.
Image source: NCJustice.org
Over-Reliance on Manufacturing
Additionally, the same gap that's affecting Salisbury is one that has affected many other cities that depend heavily on manufacturing. Obsolete skills can limit opportunities and getting trained in newer manufacturing techniques can be hard to come by. The Governor of North Carolina is working to attract more corporations and creating public-private partnerships designed to get people back to work.
A Bright Spot for Salisbury
Thanks to reality TV shows like "Duck Dynasty" and "Swamp People," the economy of Salisbury may be on the uptick. The apparel company that creates clothing for these shows and a few others has set up shop in Salisbury and is planning to buy and repurpose a local building to house the manufacturing facility. With that level of investment, the city council has been working to support Club Red Licensed Apparel in its endeavor to renovate and help restore Salisbury one stitch at a time.
Cash Strapped in Salisbury?
If you live in Salisbury or any other hard hit area of North Carolina, you should know that you have options. If you’re unemployed or underemployed and your bills are piling up, bankruptcy may be the best way to divest yourself of debts so that you can get head above water and survive financially until you can get back on your feet and fully employed.
Contact the law offices of John T Orcutt to find out if you qualify for bankruptcy protection and whether it’s the best fit for your financial circumstances. We offer a free consultation for all new clients and are ready to talk to you today.