Self-Sufficiency Standard


The Center for Women’s Welfare Self-Sufficiency Standard defines the income working families need to meet a minimum yet adequate level, taking into account family composition, ages of children, and geographic differences in costs. The Standard is an affordability and living wage economic security measure that provides an alternative to the official poverty measure.


@ActionMaryland | | Annapolis, MD

Maryland Association of Community Action Agencies serve individuals and families with low incomes who reside in Maryland, Delaware and the District of Columbia to ensure their voices are heard at the local, state and national levels. Read more.

MCAP has used the Standard to develop a calculator that can evaluate program effectiveness, inform policy, and help clients of workforce training programs achieve self-sufficiency.

The Standard previously partnered with Advocates for Children and Youth which worked to improve the lives and experiences of Maryland’s children through policy change and program improvement. 

How to cite

All Self-Sufficiency Standard data that has been produced by the Center for Women’s Welfare is publicly available. When using the data, please credit the Self-Sufficiency Standard at the Center for Women’s Welfare, University of Washington.

Contact with any questions regarding methodology or appropriate citation.

The Standard in Use - Maryland