In an article out today, financial news and opinion website 24/7 Wall St. reports that Wisconsin is the worst state in the country for black Americans. The Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts of 1965 — ending decades of government-sponsored racial oppression and intended to reverse the effects of hundreds of years of slavery — by no means have resolved racial inequality in the United States.
Across virtually all social and economic measures, there still are wide racial disparities in America. Compared to white people int he United States, 24/7 Wall St. reports that African Americans are considerably less likely to own their homes, twice as likely to be unemployed, nearly three times as likely to live in poverty, and five times more likely to go to prison. 24/7 Wall St.'s report also looks at segregation, incarceration and education.
24/7 Wall St. found that the median annual income of black households in Wisconsin is just $26,053, much lower than the median for black families nationwide and equal to just 46.5% the median income of white Wisconsin households of $56,083. Similarly, while 29.9% of white adults in Wisconsin have at least a bachelor's degree, 12.8% of black adults in the state have completed college. This is also much lower than the bachelor degree attainment rate among black adults nationwide of 19.7%. The unemployment gap between black and white state residents is also troubling. With a white jobless rate of 4.1%, the state's job market is relatively strong for the white population. For black Wisconsin residents, however, the unemployment rate is 11.1% — higher than the national unemployment rate for all black Americans.
The following are the 10 Worst States for Black Americans (click on the state for its report card).
- New Jersey
The 10 states with the narrowest racial divide are:
- New Hampshire
- New Mexico
- Rhode Island
- West Virginia
METHODOLOGY — To review black and white racial inequality in every state, 24/7 Wall St. created an index of 10 measures to assess racial gaps in access to resources and opportunities in each state. Creating the index in this way highlighted disparities between racial groups, rather than what may be particularly poor socioeconomic climates for both whites and blacks. For each measure, we constructed an index from the gaps between black and white Americans. The index was standardized using min-max normalization.
To construct the index, we used 2014 data from the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS) on median household income, poverty, high school and bachelor's educational attainment rates, and homeownership rates — each broken out by race. Unemployment rates for 2015 came from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Incarceration rates came from the Prison Policy Initiative, a Massachusetts-based think tank, and are as of 2010, the most recent year for which data is available. Also from 2010, the percentage of the population that is disenfranchised came from the Sentencing Project. From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, we considered age-adjusted mortality rates and infant mortality rates.
SOURCE 24/7 Wall St., LLC