December 8, 2004


Incredible shrinking US family: Households with five or more people have fallen by half since '70, while singlehood rises. (Peter Grier and Sara B. Miller, 12/02/04, The Christian Science Monitor)

[T]he model of three children living with both their natural parents, or, indeed, the model of five people living together at all, is somewhat retro today, taking overall statistics into account. In 1970, 21 percent of households had five or more people, according to a newly released Census analysis. Today it has dropped to 10 percent.

During that same time period, the share of households with one or two people increased from 46 percent to 60 percent. Overall, the average number of people per household decreased from 3.14 to 2.57. "Households have decreased in size, with the most profound changes occurring at the extremes, the largest and smallest households," concludes the Census report on America's families and living arrangements.

An equally important trend to reverse is the decline of elders living in the house--defunding nursing homes would go a ways to rectifying that.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 8, 2004 8:51 PM
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