This indicator shows the percentage of people who do not have the means to acquire goods and services necessary to an integrated social life. Income poverty, reduces people’s financial leeway, influencing their way of life and compromising their social integration.
In Switzerland, in 2017, the poverty rate of the population aged 16 and over was 8%. This poverty rate is higher for those with a migration background than for those without (10% compared with 7%). In the population with a migration background from the first generation, the poverty rate is significantly higher (11%), whereas in the second or subsequent generations it is significantly lower (5%) than that of the population without a migration background.
From 2014 to 2017, the poverty rate of the population with or without a migration background showed a tendency to increase.
In all major regions, the poverty rates of employed persons with or without a migration background do not differ significantly from one another, with the exception of Northwest Switzerland where the poverty rate of the population with a migration background is higher than that of the population without a migration background. A large proportion of the population in Ticino are also affected by poverty (14%); this proportion is significantly higher than that of the other major regions where rates range from 6% to 9%.
Poverty means a lack of resources (material, cultural and social) that excludes persons from the minimum acceptable way of life in the country in which they live. People who do not have the financial means to acquire goods and services necessary to an integrated social life are considered poor. This definition is based on the social existence minimum. The poverty rate thus constitutes a basis for the evaluation of social policy. The poverty rate used was calculated according to recommendations from the Swiss Conference of Social Action Institutions (SCSA). It consists of a lump sum for maintenance, individual accommodation costs as well as CHF 100 per month and per person from the age of 16 for other costs.
The poverty rate corresponds to the proportion of people living in a household whose disposable income (excl. assets) is below the poverty line. For households comprised of several adults with a different migration status, the same value is entered for persons with a migration background and for those without.
Following changes to the survey framework and improvements in the weighting model, results from 2014 on can no longer be directly compared with those from previous years (series break).