Monday, July 20, 2015

On race & growth in SE WI - - new study, old themes

There is another study about racial discrimination holding back our region.
Armed with the results of ambitious data-gathering, the Greater Milwaukee Foundation plans to focus on promoting racial equity and inclusion across the area. 
The foundation, which last year made $35 million in grants, isn't yet ready to speak in detail about its plans. 
But with its second set of a broad array of statistical indicators in hand, the organization has become convinced that the area's prosperity depends on addressing the profound gap between white and minority well-being.
Amen to that, and I'm late to the game, and yet I've been noting such studies and reports since 2007 and citing findings now twenty-three years old on the same lamentable, lack-of-political will, regionally and statewide:
  UWM's Marc Levine has been writing about this forever:
Historical and contemporary data are clear: metro Milwaukee is an economically stagnant region, with an especially troubled urban core characterized by sharply declining incomes, growing poverty, and a shrinking job base. In particular, the hypersegregated Milwaukee region is marked by some of the widest racial and spatial disparities –in employment, income, and poverty—of any metropolitan area in the country.  
*  The Public Policy Forum noted many of these realities in a 2002 study:
"The lack of housing diversity here suppresses the housing market, promises to accelerate the concentration of poverty, undercuts the local economy, segregates educational opportunities and undermines the wealth-building potential for thousands of families," said Jeffrey Browne, forum vice president and research director.
*  The Brookings Institution's John Austin took note of the penalties of legacy discrimination in a major 2007 study which I noted on my blog at the time:
He also has data about racial separation in southeastern Wisconsin and across the Great Lakes region that is deeply disturbing, but, again, offers an opportunity for change that would be good for the entire region's economy - - if leaders here have the political will to break from the past.
Themes repeated with data and links often on this blog, for example, here or here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

But you can't divide and conquer without racism. As anyone should be able to tell if they are following our jet-settin' governor bounce around America on Wisconsin taxpayer's dime, Scott Walker's political ambitions trump any service to the wee-little people of the Badger State.