Since 1970, the decennial census has captured populations of both counties and cities. The following graph depicts the population of Fairfield County doubling between 1970 and 2010. The population of Lancaster, the county seat, has experienced an average of 4.3% change with each census between 1970 and 2010. On the other hand, Pickerington grew by 462% between 1970 and 1980 and has averaged 68.1% increase in each of the last three decades. Pickerington has blossomed into a city half the size of Lancaster in those 40 years.
Within Fairfield County, an estimated 87.6% of persons report their race as white, non-Hispanic. 7.1% Black or African American, 1.3% Asian, and 2.1% is reported to be of Hispanic or Latino origin. Persons of two or more races consist of 2% with all other categories reporting less than 1% of county population. Pickerington is more diverse racially/ethnically than Lancaster.
Fairfield County educational make up shows that 91.5% of population aged 25 years or older are high school graduates (compared to the 88.5% average for Ohio), with 26% of population holding a bachelor’s degree or higher. Approximately 25.2% of Ohio adults hold a bachelor’s degree or higher. Comparing Pickerington with Lancaster, Pickerington has a higher percentage of persons aged 25 years or older who graduated from High School (96.8%) than Lancaster (86.4%). Likewise those reporting a Bachelor’s degree or higher in Pickerington (38.8%) is more than twice as high as those reporting in Lancaster (16.5%).
Following the recession that began in December 2007 and ended in June 2009, the unemployment rate in Fairfield County peaked at an average of 8.9% in 2010. As of October 2014, the county unemployment rate was 4.0%. By 2013 the monthly unemployment rate in Fairfield County averaged 6.4% and has generally been on a decreasing trend through 2015 when the rate averaged 4.2%. In addition, the county rate has remained below the Ohio average in a range of .7 to 1.6%.
Poverty has been associated with poor health outcomes including substance abuse and addiction. Poverty has also been shown to increase the negative impact of a chronic health problem upon one's mobility and activity levels.
Definition: Percent of population with incomes below the federal poverty threshold level (FPL).
Definition: Percent of children (Under 18 years old) living in families with incomes below the FPL.
Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau. Small Area Income & Poverty Estimates (SAIPE)http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/saipe/index.html ; Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), May 30, 2008; www.cdc.gov/mmWR/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5721a5.htm