ALICE report

ALICE® Report: A Study of Financial Hardship in Maryland


ALICE: County Data


United Way ALICE® Report

ALICE is an acronym for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed. The earnings of Maryland ALICE individuals and families are not enough to support a “survival budget” that is more than twice the Federal Poverty Level (FPL).

The ALICE Report, released by United Ways throughout the state of Maryland, reveals that more than 825,000 households—more than a third— can’t afford the state’s high cost of living and don’t earn enough to afford basic necessities.  The report provides a framework, language and tools to measure and address the struggles of the growing number of ALICE households in Maryland.

The Maryland ALICE “Survival Budget” is $69,672 for a family of four (two adults, one infant and one preschooler) and $26,052 for a single adult in 2016. Significantly higher than the Federal Poverty Level, which does not accurately reflect current, local costs of living, Survival Budgets have increased 27 percent compared to nine percent inflation since 2010.

“ALICE isn’t going away,” said Baker, “and as this latest report shows, the numbers are only increasing. We must continue to work together to help remove barriers in areas such as housing, transportation and childcare that prevent so many of our citizens from leading a secure life. Stronger, stable working families mean stronger, stable communities. And that’s something that United Way, our donors, volunteers, staff and partners fight for every day.”

–Franklyn Baker, President and CEO, United Way of Central Maryland

Funding for the United Ways of Maryland ALICE report was made possible by OneMain® Financial.


ALICE represents our hardworking neighbors in need. ALICE holds positions such as cashiers, administrative and nursing assistants, waiters/waitresses, laborers and security guards and jobs in the retail and food industries. Vital to our state’s future economic well-being, they face barriers beyond their control that limit their ability to become financially stable and self-sufficient.

Heather (2)

“We make too much to get help, but not enough to survive.”

What does it cost to afford the basics?

The ALICE Household Survival Budget accounts for the actual costs of basic necessities in Maryland. See a breakdown of what it costs to afford the basics in the report.

ALICE Maryland
Survival Budget
Poverty Level
2 Adults, 2 Children $69,672 $24,300
1 Individual $26,052 $11,880


Maryland County Data

Moving Beyond ALICE: Recommendations From The Field

Resources and Media

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For more than 90 years, United Way of Central Maryland has been improving lives in the communities it serves: Anne Arundel County, Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County and Howard County, Maryland.

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