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Baton Rouge Area Foundation releases 15th Annual CityStats Report

Baton Rouge, LA – The Baton Rouge Area Foundation (BRAF) today announced the release of the 15th iteration of its CityStats report, a survey assessing key indicators to gauge quality of life and access to opportunity in East Baton Rouge Parish.

This year’s report reveals that there has been a positive shift in the community’s outlook, with fewer concerns about the parish’s direction. Moreover, the report indicates a 20% drop in the number of individuals expressing dissatisfaction with the pace of progress in East Baton Rouge Parish compared to the previous year.

Data also indicates that many residents of East Baton Rouge Parish are struggling financially, despite a decrease in the unemployment rate to a 20-year low. Two-thirds of survey respondents find it difficult to pay their monthly bills, and three out of four do not feel prepared for unexpected, emergency expenses.

Chris Meyer, CEO and president of the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, said, “This year’s CityStats findings reflect a community poised for transformation. These data inform a clear path of where we ought to concentrate our efforts moving forward, and we’re resolute in our commitment to working alongside partners to uplift every community member and increase access to opportunity.”

To gather the data for this comprehensive report, the Foundation hired the Baton Rouge Area Chamber to gather public data for this annual report and LJR Custom Strategies to conduct a companion survey. The survey is a representative sample of East Baton Rouge Parish residents. Results of the survey are weighted by age, race, income and gender to most closely resemble the demographic makeup of the most recently available East Baton Rouge census data.

The survey was conducted from August 3-9, 2023, with a sample size of 500 residents via cellphone and landline. The survey’s margin of error is +/- 4.3%. BRAF has issued this report each year since 2009. All reports are available at

CityStats is underwritten by the Newton B. Thomas Support Foundation, which is an affiliate foundation of the Baton Rouge Area Foundation.

Select results from the CityStats poll:  

 Government and Civic Engagement  

·       42% said the parish is going in the wrong direction; this is the fewest number of people thinking the parish is going the wrong direction since BRAF began tracking this.

·       26% of residents suggest reducing crime could help make Baton Rouge more appealing to newcomers, while 15% said to improve roads and traffic, and 15% said to improve public schools. 

 Economic Prosperity 

·       2 in 3 EBR residents have difficulty paying monthly bills; 22% said it was very difficult to pay monthly bills and 40% said it was somewhat difficult.  

·       For the second year in a row, EBR saw a positive net migration with 2,131 more people moving into the parish than out in 2022. 

Safe Neighborhoods 

·       East Baton Rouge Parish saw a 25% decrease in homicide year over year, though at 30.0 the parish average remains significantly above the national average of 8.2 homicides per 100,000 residents. 

Resilient Communities

·       1 in 4 residents’ homes have flooded due to natural disasters.

·       1 in 3 residents’ current homes have sustained structural damage due to natural disaster.

·       52% believe that solar power is a reliable option for helping to power homes in Baton Rouge.


About the Baton Rouge Area Foundation: Among the largest community foundations in the country, the Baton Rouge Area Foundation seeks to improve the quality of life in greater Baton Rouge and across south Louisiana.  


The Foundation pursues its mission by serving donors to build the assets that drive initiatives and solutions, supporting local nonprofits to ensure overall impact and sustainability, engaging community leaders to develop transformational responses to emerging opportunities and challenges, and by partnering with others to leverage collective resources and create the capacity to be a stimulus of positive regional change. 


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