A major study by the National Urban League shows that despite economic gains in the past several years, Blacks are earning 37 percent less than whites.
In its 46th edition of “State of Black America: Under Siege, The Plot to Destroy Democracy,” the National Urban League paints a bleak future for Black America, where voting rights, homeownership and education curriculums are under assault.
The report, released April 12, say Blacks have made gains in healthcare, but continue to fall behind in education, social justice and civic engagement.
Perhaps the most alarming part of the report is the salaries Blacks are making compared to their white counterparts. According to the report, the median household income for Black residents is $43,862, which is 37 percent less than that of white people, at $69,823.
National Urban League President Marc Morial said in a statement, “In that area of wealth, we’ve seen almost no change, none, since the civil rights days.” Morial added, “The wealth disparity has gotten wider.”
The National Urban League said the homeownership rate gap also widened, as the Black rate of ownership fell from 61 percent of the White rate in 2020 to 59 percent in 2022. Census data shows Black couples are more than twice as likely as white residents to be denied a mortgage or a home improvement loan. Considering these figures, Blacks also are less likely to build generational wealth that usually stems from homeowners.
The report said the poverty rate gap shrank, with the rate of Blacks not in poverty increasing from 39 percent of the White rate in 2020 to 49 percent in 2022.
The report said the pandemic-induced recession increased unemployment rates across all ethnic and racial groups. As a result, the unemployment rate gap widened between Blacks and whites.
The employment rate among whites fell from 54 percent in 2020 to 51 percent in 2022, and the rate of Black men employed dropped from 50 percent to 44 percent.
The report said health disparities still afflict Black children and adults more than white Americans. Black women are 59 percent more likely to die while giving birth and 31 percent more likely to die of breast cancer. The death rate of Black men from prostate cancer nearly tripled. Today, Black men are 52 percent more likely to die of prostate cancer, according to the report.
The report also said Black girls were twice as likely as white girls to be obese and Blacks 20 or older diagnosed with diabetes decreased from 32.6 percent to 12.7 percent, narrowing the racial equity gap by 26 percentage points. Although there is racial equity in the likelihood of contracting COVID-19 Blacks are 2.5 times more likely to be hospitalized and 1.7 times more likely to die than whites.
In education, the report said the educational gap impacts the Black community’s efforts in attaining wealth. The report said fewer Black students are enrolled in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) classes that can help secure higher-income jobs. In minority schools, teachers are more likely to be inexperienced and uncertified, according to the report.
The U.S Justice Department data shows that Black people are three times more likely to be jailed if arrested and twice more likely than white people to experience police brutality.
When it comes to the vote, white people are five percent more likely to be registered than Black people.
The report also attacks recent states that have passed restrictive voting laws after President Donald Trump was defeated in the 2020 elections. Georgia, Florida and Texas have passed voting laws after President Trump made false claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen when he lost to Joe Biden.
And Republican lawmakers are redrawing Congressional map districts to reduce the number of Congressional seats held by Blacks and Latinos.
The report said “Never has the fragility of our Democracy been more exposed than it is today. Fueled by “The Big Lie,” that there was mass voter fraud in the 2020 election, state legislatures are restricting voting access in districts with large populations of African Americans and other people of color. Some states are taking measures even further by actively targeting election oversight roles held by people of color.”
Morial told the Associated Press that he decided to release the report in Atlanta, where a concentration of historically Black colleges has long represented high achievement among Black students. The Urban League is responding by launching a “Reclaim Your Vote” campaign.
“Georgia is ground zero for voter suppression,” Morial told the Associated Press. “The legislature’s actions after January 6 have been sweeping in their aggressiveness to suppress the vote. We’ve got to remain resolute, to push back against this. We cannot give in. We cannot give up.”