Community






The quality of life in a community comes from a wide variety of factors, and in this section of the Westchester Index we report on key areas including civic participation, safety, transportation and environmental conditions.

Looking at measures of civic engagement, Westchester County residents are about as active as residents across the state and nation. Residents donated to charity at a rate of 1.8% of income in 2019, similar to the state and just above the national rate of 1.6%. In 2020, 89% of voting-age residents were registered to vote and 62% did vote.

Westchester’s serious crime rate was below the state and nation at 103 serious crimes reported per 10,000 residents in 2020. The rate increased slightly from 2019 but was down 57% since 2000. However, the rate was above that in similar counties of Nassau, Putnam and Rockland. In 2020, there were 17 victims of domestic violence per 10,000 residents in Westchester County, a 35% decrease from 2009.

The county had a large racial disparity in arrest rates, with arrests of African Americans 7 times as high as that of whites and 2.5 times as high as that of Hispanics in 2020. For every 10,000 African Americans in the County, 31 were arrested, compared to rates of 12 for Hispanics and 4 for whites.

There were also disparities in Internet access. African Americans in Westchester County had the lowest percentage of households with Internet access at 85%, followed by Hispanic households at 90%. Asian households had the highest percentage at 96%.

About 49,500 (14%) of households in Westchester County did not have access to a vehicle. White residents of the county were most likely to drive alone to work (66%), versus using public transportation (23%), carpooling (7%), or using another form of transportation, such as motorcycles, bicycles, taxis or walking (5%). In comparison, African Americans and Asians had higher levels of public transportation use, 29% and 27% respectively.

Environmental measures show Westchester is a densely populated county with good air quality and an increasing amount of protected open space, but a mixed trend in water quality in the Long Island Sound.

Westchester County had a 2019 population density of 2,247 people per square mile, well above the state average of 413 per square mile and the U.S. average of 93 per square mile.

In 2020, 90% of days with air quality measurements in Westchester County were good air days, similar to the rate in 2019, but an 11-point increase from 2000. The low was 66% good air days in 2007.

Southeastern Westchester County lies on Long Island Sound. In 2020, the organization Save the Sound gave the Eastern Narrows sub-region of Long Island Sound (of which Westchester is a part) received a score of 74%, or a grade of C on a scale from A-F. This was down slightly from 2018 (82% or B-) but similar to 2016 (70% or C-). The lower grade was mainly due to worsening chlorophyll a, a measure of microalgae growth in the Sound, along with fluctuating weather conditions. The Eastern Narrows trend in 2020 was lowered from Stable to Variable.

The County has about 760 square miles of permanently protected open space, up from 705 square miles in 2006. A little more than 1,000 square miles of land was not permanently protected but still contributed to open space character in 2022 (e.g., private recreation facilities, farms, land along utility lines). This was similar to the County’s 2006 count.





INDICATORS TREND | WESTCHESTER
Early Prenatal Care, by Mother's Race/Ethnicity 1
Increasing
Infant Mortality Rate, by Race/Ethnicity 10 Not Applicable*
Children with Elevated Blood Lead Levels 0
Maintaining
Children Receiving Subsidized Child Care -1
Decreasing
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity 1
Increasing
Disengaged Youth, Ages 16 to 19 -1
Decreasing
Single-Parent Families, by Race/Ethnicity 1
Increasing
Single Female-Headed Households 0
Maintaining
Contributions as a Percentage of Income 0
Maintaining
Voter Registration Rate 1
Increasing
Voter Participation Rate 1
Increasing
Serious Crimes -1
Decreasing
Victims of Domestic Violence -1
Decreasing
Arrest Rates, by Race/Ethnicity 10 Not Applicable*
Households With Internet Access, by Race/Ethnicity 10 Not Applicable*
Households without Vehicles -1
Decreasing
Means of Transportation to Work, by Race/Ethnicity -1
Decreasing
Air Quality 1
Increasing
Population Density 0
Maintaining
Water Quality of the Long Island Sound 1
Increasing
Open Space in Westchester County 1
Increasing
Change in Total Population 1
Increasing
Change in Population, by Race/Ethnicity 1
Increasing
Change in Population, by Age -1
Decreasing
People with Disabilities 1
Increasing
Language Diversity 1
Increasing
People 65 or Older Living Alone 1
Increasing
Change in Total Jobs -1
Decreasing
Change in Jobs by Sector 10 Not Applicable*
Business Ownership, by Race/Ethnicity 10 Not Applicable*
Average Salary by Sector 10 Not Applicable*
Median Household Income, by Race/Ethnicity 0
Maintaining
Female to Male Earnings Ratio 0
Maintaining
Unemployment Rate, by Race/Ethnicity 1
Increasing
People Living in Poverty -1
Decreasing
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity 0
Maintaining
Seniors Living in Poverty 0
Maintaining
Seniors Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity 1
Increasing
Food Insecurity -1
Decreasing
Households Receiving SNAP, by Race/Ethnicity 0
Maintaining
Public Assistance 0
Maintaining
People Receiving Supplemental Security Income 1
Increasing
Homeownership Rate, by Race/Ethnicity 1
Increasing
Cost of Homeownership, by Race/Ethnicity 10 Not Applicable*
Overall Housing Cost Burden -1
Decreasing
Cost of Rent, by Race/Ethnicity 10 Not Applicable*
Rent Burdened Households -1
Decreasing
Homelessness, by Race/Ethnicity 10 Not Applicable*
Homelessness, by Sex 10 Not Applicable*
Per-Student Spending 0
Maintaining
Student Suspensions -1
Decreasing
Student Performance on Grade 3 English, by Race/Ethnicity 1
Increasing
High School Cohort Graduation Rate, by Race/Ethnicity 1
Increasing
College Admission Rate, by Race/Ethnicity 1
Increasing
College Enrollment Rate, by Race/Ethnicity -1
Decreasing
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity 1
Increasing
People Without Health Insurance -1
Decreasing
Mortality Rate, by Race/Ethnicity 10 Not Applicable*
Mortality Rate from Chronic Lower Respiratory Disease, by Race/Ethnicity 10 Not Applicable*
Diabetes Mortality, by Race/Ethnicity 10 Not Applicable*
Suicide Rates, by Race/Ethnicity 10 Not Applicable*


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