PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Portland’s homeless crisis has been a polarizing issue for many residents, including those that have been long-time locals and those that have recently relocated. A recent report ranks just how “needy” the Rose City is in comparison to others.
Personal finance website WalletHub used two key dimensions — economic well-being and health and safety, to rank 2022’s Neediest Cities. Within those two key dimensions, WalletHub analyzed more specific factors such as adult poverty rates, foreclosure rates, food insecurity rates and crime rates.
Portland ranked at No. 80 out of the 182 U.S. cities on the list. It had an overall score of 43.81 points out of 100, with 100 being the worst possible score.
The Rose City also ranked at No. 80 in the “economic well-being” category but went up a few spots to No. 71 for the “health and safety” category.
WalletHub’s report was released in December 2022, around the same time that Portland broke the homicide record from the past year. In 2021, there were 90 recorded homicides. In 2022, that number grew to 96.
According to the Portland Police Bureau, about one-third of those homicides involved the city’s homeless community, which is reportedly growing as well. The Joint Office of Homeless Services said that the homeless population in Multnomah County has increased by more than 30% since the pandemic.
Portland wasn’t the only Pacific Northwestern city that was ranked. Spokane, Wash., was right behind at No. 82, while Salem was listed at No. 96 and Seattle was at No. 113. See the full rankings here.
The three most economically disadvantaged cities according to WalletHub are Detroit, Brownsville, Texas, and Cleveland.
Overland Park, Kan., Bismarck, N.D., and Columbia, Md., were considered the least “needy” cities.