How bad is it? Worse than you might think



Taking a look back, the Colorado Center on Law and Policy analyzed what's happened in the last decade in a new report called "State of Working Colorado 2010."

If it makes you feel better, Colorado isn't as bad off as some states, but that doesn't mean things haven't gotten worse in the last 10 years.

Here's a dose of what the study found:

*Employment: At the end of 2010, Colorado had 40,000 fewer jobs than in 2000, despite having almost 900,000 more residents. The 2007 recession was largely behind that decline, eliminating 141,000 jobs, or 6 percent of the Colorado labor force.

*Unemployment: Colorado ended the decade with its highest unemployment rate in 28 years. However, Colorado’s unemployment is on par with the rest of the country, and recent increases are partially a result of Coloradans resuming the job search.

*Income and wages: Colorado’s median income is higher than the national average. However, income has been stagnant, and Coloradans end the decade with the same median household income they started the decade with, despite gains in productivity.

*Poverty: Poverty in Colorado increased throughout the decade, though it remains less severe here than in the nation as a whole. In the wake of the recession, more than one-quarter of Coloradans live with incomes of less than 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Level — a cutoff many experts use as a realistic assessment of modern human needs.

*Health care: A shrinking share of Coloradans is able to secure private health insurance, and 16 percent of residents are uninsured. However, during the recession the share of uninsured remained stable thanks to public health insurance programs.

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