The State of America’s Children® 20232023-06-08T13:10:55-05:00

The State of America’s Children® 2023

A Note about Using State of America’s Children 2023

Children’s Defense Fund is on a mission to ensure every child has what they need to thrive. So how does one measure progress toward that goal? We can begin by examining the economic conditions of children and their families, and investments in the institutions and services upon which children rely for their well-being. This year’s State of America’s Children® aims to do just that.

Using the most recent data from the most reliable sources, Children’s Defense Fund presents data in this report that comes directly from public sources. Therefore, anyone can replicate our approach and findings.

This report outlines the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on America’s children. Some of the information in this report may be alarming and disheartening. Still, we cannot ignore the reality of the pandemic’s negative impact on children, especially Black and Brown children. While some of this information can be challenging to digest, we make room to acknowledge and celebrate the encouraging trends so that they can continue.

The State of America’s Children 2023 summarizes the status of America’s children in 11 areas: child population, child poverty, income and wealth inequality, housing and homelessness, child hunger and nutrition, child health, early childhood, education, child welfare, youth justice, and gun violence. We include corresponding state fact sheets to provide an overview of how America’s children are faring to inform conversations and improve policies to ensure all children can thrive.

We ask that you interrogate these findings. Look beneath the aggregate numbers and averages to examine the vast disparities between states and racial groups. Ask yourself, “What can I do to improve this reality for children? How am I contributing to the success of America’s children?” We ask you to use The State of America’s Children 2023 to inform your conversations and effectively make a case for policies, programs, and strategies to improve the odds for children in your state and nationwide. We must keep moving forward in the fight for America’s young people.

Explore the Report


Chapter 5:
Child Hunger and Nutrition


Chapter 6:
Child Health

View State-by-State Factsheets
View the Tables

Media Contact:

Beki San Martin
Communications and Outreach Associate