Utah January 09, 2016
8 Shocking Facts About Utah That Could Make You Want to Move
Utah is a pretty great place to live, but it does have its flaws. Here are a few statistics that might make you want to move…
1. Utah’s pollution is bad...and getting worse.
Utah’s infamous inversion is nasty stuff. The American Lung Association ranked Salt Lake City as the 7th worst in the country for pollution. A recent study showed that our pollution rates continue to climb instead of improving.
2. We just keep ranking last in the country for per-pupil education spending.
Dead last. It’s been that way for years and will likely continue unless we make it a budget priority (or have less children to educate).
3. Utah’s population growth puts strain on roads, schools and public services.
Governor Herbert recently announced that Utah’s population now tops 3 million people. Between July 2013 and July 2014, Utah added another 40,000 residents to the state. Those newest Utahns are primarily born here - not transplanted from other states. As long as we keep having the highest per capita number of children, we’ll keep putting a strain on our resources.
4. Utah is the worst state in the nation for women’s equality.
When comparing Utah to other states for women’s wages, education and political empowerment, Utah ranks very last.
5. Utah has a lot of children without access to healthcare.
An October 2015 report by Voices for Utah Children and Georgetown University’s Center for Children and Families found that 85,000 Utah children lack health insurance. Our state ranks #47 in the nation for insured children, and worst in the nation for insuring children with family incomes below 200% of poverty level.
6. We have high rates of prescription drug abuse.
The Utah Department of Health reported a 400% increase in the number of prescription drug overdose fatalities between 2013 and 2014, stating that an average of 21 Utahns die each month from prescription drug overdose.
7. We’re number one in the country for affinity fraud.
According to the FBI, Utah has the highest rate of affinity fraud in the nation. This type of fraud is particularly heinous - the perpetrator is someone you know and trust, often through church, school or your neighborhood. In 2012, more than 4,400 Utahns were victims of affinity fraud, with an estimated $1.4 billion in money stolen.
8. Utahns don’t vote!
Utah has the third-lowest voter turnout rate in the nation, according to the United States Election Project. A shockingly low 28.8 percent of Utah’s voting population casts ballots - the rest don't bother.
Instead of moving, why not be part of the solution? How do you think Utahns can help fix these problems?