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Who is ALICE?

We all know ALICE. ALICE is an acronym for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed and puts a face on those people who are working but still struggling to make ends meet. ALICE families have household incomes above the Federal Poverty Level, but below a basic cost of living threshold.

The Connecticut ALICE Report is a study of financial hardships in our state. ALICE may be your family, friends, coworkers, or neighbors, and represents every race, gender, age, and ethnicity. ALICE lives in every town and city in our state. ALICE is your nursing assistant, childcare worker, home health aide, car mechanic, security guard, hair stylist, store clerk, and office assistant -- workers essential to us and to every community, but who still stuggle to survive on what these jobs pay. You can give to benefit the lives of ALICE families in Southeastern Connecticut.

The facts about ALICE

  • 35% of families in Connecticut walk a financial tightrope, including the hard-working ALICE families living above poverty struggling to pay bills and put food on the table.
  • ALICE households make up more than 10% of all households in 81 (or 48%) of Connecticut's 169 towns and cities.
  • 51% of all jobs in Connecticut pay less than $20/hour, or slightly more than $40,000 annually, and most pay between $10 and $15/hour.






The financial hardships that ALICE faces affect the overall social and economic stability of our community. When ALICE moves from simply surviving to thriving, our entire community thrives. Download our United Way's local ALICE data for New London County.

What is United Way doing to help ALICE?

United Way wanted to understand why so many hard working families still struggle financially. We wanted to understand how this struggle affects their lives and limits their opportunities and choices. Also, we wanted an objective, research-based look at how this financial hardship impacts our community.

Through the Report, we hope to raise awareness about ALICE and the need to help ALICE families become financially secure. United Way invests in local programs and initiatives to achieve this. This includes funding programs that address education, financial stability and health -- the building blocks for a good quality of life. We also support and operate programs that provide basic needs.

  • Provided 434 households with one-time winter heating assistance last year to prevent them from freezing through United Way’s Project Warm-up.
  • Fed more than 21,000 people struggling with hunger and food insecurity every month through the Gemma E. Moran United Way/Labor Food Center and an average of 1,000 households per month at the Mobile Food Pantry.
  • Through the New London County Fund to End Homelessness, provided rapid rehousing and shelter diversion services for a total of 204 households including 140 families with 286 children.
  • Saved residents a total of $464,571 on their prescription medications through the FamilyWize Discount Prescription Drug program.
  • United Way 2-1-1 handled 23,351 calls from people in New London County seeking information and referral resulting in 32,418 service requests.

If you or someone you know is ALICE, dial 2-1-1 for free from anywhere in Connecticut. Call specialists are available 24/7. When calling, you will describe your situation and the specialist can determine what programs you are eligible for and services that are located near you. 2-1-1 is funded by all Connecticut United Ways and the State of Connecticut. You may also search their database online at

What does the ALICE Report tell us?

There is a signifcantly greater need than the typical portrait painted of Connecticut, with its high median income and low poverty rates. In one of the wealthiest states in the union, there is a high number of households who cannot make ends meet.

Specifically, the Report tells us that housing and child care are the two biggest factors contributing to financial hardship for ALICE families. The Report determined what a family in Connecticut needs to earn annually in order to survive and created a Household Survival Budget. Bear in mind that this budget does not factor in any savings or money for large emergency expenses. It is simply a "survival" budget to get by.


Click here to download a copy of the Connecticut United Way's ALICE Report in its entirety.

Click here to download United Way of Southeastern Connecticut's statistics on ALICE for New London County.

Click here to visit the statewide ALICE website.

Donate now to help ALICE through United Way's network of health and human service programs in New London County.