Census: Many Oregonians plunge into poverty between 2000 and 2010

EUGENE, Ore. - A new Census report indicates more Oregonians are living in poverty than a decade ago.

Between 2000 and 2010, the number of people in Oregon surged by 16 percent. Only North Carolina saw a larger increase.

Economist Tim Duy said the rankings don't surprise him.

"This is a decade that saw 2 recessions that had a relatively significant impact on the Oregon economy and Oregon workers," he said.

RV companies like Monaco and Country Coach downsized, and others like Sony and Hynix left in the last decade. Thousands of middle income jobs vanished in a matter of years - sometimes months.

"When these companies closed, it left thousands of people in this county without work," said Noreen Dunnells with United Way of Lane County. "That had a spiral or cascading effect on peoples' ability to manage financially."

Terry McDonald with St. Vincent de Paul believes Oregon, like other states at the top of the list, may be a victim of its location.

"It's those states that are sandwiched between major urban area or major powerhouse economic areas," he said.

This conviction has led the organization to salvage more from wealthier areas to the north and south.

"It's so important to harvest of areas where they have a lot to give and they don't have a lot of need," McDonald said.

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