Where unemployment is up, rent needs higher in Missouri

June 2, 2020

Want to find the counties in Missouri with the most rent assistance requests per capita since COVID? Look no further than unemployment claims. We examined unemployment claims and requests to 2-1-1 for rent assistance by county in Missouri during the first nine weeks after COVID-19 was declared a pandemic (March 15 – May 16). As the chart shows, rates of rent assistance requests to 2-1-1 are highest in counties where a larger proportion of the adult population filed unemployment claims since COVID-19. Mouse over each circle in the scatterplot for information on individual counties, or highlight a county using the “County Search” tool to the right of the chart. Rate of rent assistance requests per 100,000 population was determined by dividing the number of requests by 2018 adult population from the American Community Survey (U.S. Census) and multiplying by 100,000. Proportion of adult population that filed unemployment claims was determined by dividing the number of unemployment claims by 2018 adult population. Unemployment data were obtained from the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.

Contributors: Rachel Garg, Balaji Golla, Irum Javed, Matthew Kreuter