A View of the State of Working Oregon
For the typical Oregonian, economic progress is a distant memory. More than four years into an economic “recovery,” the typical Oregonian — the one occupying the middle rung in the income ladder, or median — was earning less than when the recovery began. Sadly, the recovery period following the end of the Great Recession is merely a continuation of the pattern in place for more than three decades, where income gains mainly flow to the top.
What does the growth in income inequality over the past generation mean in dollar terms to the typical Oregonian? In 2013, that Oregonian earned less than half of the income he or she would have earned had income inequality remained at the level of 1980.
Income inequality has rightly been described as the, “defining challenge of our time,” and Oregon lawmakers need to step up to that challenge.
Full report is available as a PDF: Oregon Income Inequality: More Than Three Decades in the Making