2015 Oklahoma Poverty Profile

Download this fact sheet as a pdf.

610,828 Oklahomans had incomes below the poverty level in 2015.

That’s 16.1 percent of Oklahoma’s population, or about one out of every six Oklahomans.

What is the federal poverty level?poverty-guidelines

  • The federal poverty level (FPL) was first established in 1965 at three times the cost of a basic food plan. The FPL is adjusted annually for inflation.
  • Poverty rates are calculated using the FPL consider only pre-tax income. They do not account for non-cash benefits like SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) or after-tax income like the Earned Income Tax Credit.
  • While the measure has its flaws, federal poverty rates are useful as an estimate of the number of Oklahomans who are struggling in the private economy. The FPL is also used to determine eligibility for various public programs and benefits like Medicaid and SNAP.

Poverty Charts


Gene Perry worked for OK Policy from 2011 to 2019. He is a native Oklahoman and a citizen of the Cherokee Nation. He graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a B.A. in history and an M.A. in journalism.

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