Wednesday, February 8, 2012

In the News: Racial (In)Equity

The Urban Institute recently graded (A through F) the 100 largest metropolitan regions in terms of racial equity. Five categories were used to determine each community’s grade:

1. Residential segregation

2. Neighborhood income gap

3. School test score gap

4. Employment gap

5. Home ownership gap

The grades are available on two interactive maps, one that illustrates the Black-White Opportunity Gap and another that does the same for the Latino-White Gap. Roll your mouse over the map to learn the score of the metropolitan region that interests you most. You can also adjust the maps’ scoring system to emphasize the gap of greatest importance to your interests or work. For example, if you are only interested in the school test score gap, change the box in the lower right corner to read:

Residential Segregation:
Neighborhood Income:
School Test Scores:
Home ownership:
Bottom of Form

The map will automatically recompute the scores and display new rankings.

It is important to note that African American and Latino families have experienced centuries of systemic and institutional racism that has prevented many from achieving their full potential. Even in “A” communities, the average African American attends lower-performing schools, lives in a lower-income neighborhood and is more likely to be unemployed and less likely to own their home than the average White. These gaps are two-three times wider in the “F” metropolitan regions.

As evidenced by Urban Institute’s data and analysis, African American and Latino communities face disproportionate access to quality education, housing and employment opportunities. Many of you work tirelessly to improve the lives of all, while focusing especially on increasing opportunity in minority communities. While great strides have been made in recent decades, racial disparities continue to exist and much work remains to be done.

CSSP is committed to promoting racial equity and opportunities for all families. Visit for more information about this work.

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