Neighborhood Gap for Blacks and Hispanics in Metropolitan America
John R. Logan, Director
for Comparative Urban and Regional Research
University at Albany
October 13, 2002
This report is based
on data from the 1990 and 2000 Census of Population analyzed by the
were made by Brian Stults, Jacob Stowell, and Deirdre Oakley.?Data
for individual metropolitan regions, and for their central city and
suburban portions, can be found on the Center’s website:
http://www.s4.brown.edu/cen2000/SepUneq/PublicSeparateUnequal.htm.?The site also includes Metro Monitors with tables
and charts that summarize findings for several major metropolitan regions.
All racial groups in every major part of the country
experienced improvements in their incomes and in the prosperity of their
neighborhoods during the 1990-2000 decade.?
But analysis of newly released Census 2000 data (Summary File 3)
reveal that a decade of widespread prosperity did not yield greater income
or neighborhood equality for blacks and Hispanics.?
This report assesses where we were at the beginning of the new
century in terms of longstanding economic inequalities between racial
and ethnic groups.?Because more recent data show that all groups
have lost ground in the current recession, we see little hope of changing
the persistent pattern of “separate and unequal?for America’s
black and Hispanic families.
We look at two aspects of people’s lives: their own household
incomes and the quality of their neighborhoods.?Both are important, and they are surprisingly
distinct.?As whites and Asians
earn more, they tend to move to neighborhoods that match their own economic
standing, with commensurate levels of public services, school quality,
safety, and environmental quality.?Due
to residential segregation, blacks and Hispanics are less able to move
to better neighborhoods.?Despite
overall prosperity, the “neighborhood gap?grew in the last decade.?It was larger and it was growing faster for
the most affluent blacks and Hispanics (compared to whites with similar
incomes) than for those close to the poverty level.?This report demonstrates that separate translates
to unequal even for the most successful black and Hispanic minorities.