The number of children living with their grandparents has shot up 64% to 7.8 million in the past 18 years, a new U.S. Census Bureau report shows.
This is a large increase from 1991, when 4.7 million children lived with a grandparent, and AARP reports it could be a result of the economic crisis.
Most of these children living with their grandparents also live with at least one parent, at 76%, down only slightly from 1991’s 77%.
Demographically, white children have seen the biggest increase in living with grandparents, as the figure nearly doubled from 5% to 9%. However, there hasn’t been a huge shift for black and Hispanic children, whose percentages went from 15% and 12% in 1991, respectively, to 17% and 14%.
It seems that grandparents are a common substitute for kids who don’t live with their parents, as 64% of blacks, 55% of whites, and 61% of Hispanic children not living with parents live solely with grandparents. Asian children, on the other hand, only live with grandparents 35% of the time, when not living with parents.
A recent Gallup poll shows that caregiving often takes a physical toll on caregivers, with caregivers aged 65 or older scoring lower on a physical health index than non-caregivers of the same age.
The full Census report can be viewed here.
Written by Alyssa Gerace