Vulnerable Populations on Cape Cod

The COVID-19 pandemic, a major disruption to Barnstable County’s economic activity, exposed challenges to the region’s resilience, including the pandemic’s disproportionate impact on vulnerable populations for whom employment in high-risk occupations, financial impacts to small businesses, or layoffs and furloughs may have been highly disruptive. In Barnstable County, these groups include residents below the poverty level* (approximately 7% of the population) and households receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) assistance or food stamps (approximately 7.8% of households). They also include residents in Environmental Justice Block Groups (EJBG), which are found in all but one of Barnstable County’s towns (please see the Environmental Justice Populations page for more information).

*The US Census Bureau uses a set of income thresholds that vary by family size and composition to determine who classifies as below the poverty level. A family and every resident in it is considered to be living in poverty if that family’s total income is less than the determined threshold for that family’s size and composition.