Inequality & Disparity

In trying to better shape policies to meet the realities of low-income families rather than stereotypes, it makes sense to actually engage low-income people and middle-income people in danger of slipping down the economic ladder in order instead to grow our middle class. Diversity is important—people from the various racial and ethnic groups should be represented within these efforts, but finding the best way to engage different communities hasn’t always been an easy task.cThis is another area where solid research would be useful, illuminating the most effective outreach strategies and methods of engagement, but at a minimum programs should be asking more participants to give their opinions on the services provided while tracking their outcomes. 

 (Joy Moses, Center for American Progress – Moving Away from Racial Stereotypes in Poverty Policy, Feb. 23, 2012 – Retrieved 1-10-15)

Why is this important? America’s child poverty rate is currently above 22 percent—the highest in the developed world. Black and Hispanic children continue to suffer disproportionately from poverty, with the youngest children most at risk of being poor. Housing instability is prevalent among families in poverty, with detrimental impact on every aspect of their health and well-being. 


  • Nearly two in five Black children and three in 10 Hispanic children were poor in 2013, compared to less than one in 9 White children.
  • Nearly one in five Black children and one in eight Hispanic children were living in extreme poverty, compared to one in 22 White children.
  • More than two out of five Black children under age 5 were poor; more than one in five were extremely poor.

Housing inequality is directly related to concepts of racial inequality, social inequality, income inequality, and wealth inequality. In addition, it is the result of a number of different factors including natural market forces, housing discrimination, and housing segregation. (Wikipedia)


Good suburban neighborhoods with good schools where jobs are being created are like exclusive private clubs. Most poor minorities have no chance of gaining admission thanks in large part to the lack of affordable housing.

Bart Harvey former CEO of nonprofit Enterprise Community Partners in Rebuilding a Dream 


Supplementary Reading

Providing Affordable Family Housing and Reducing Residential Segregation by Income – A Systematic Review>>
Wealth inequality has widened along racial, ethnic lines since end of Great Recession>>

Dr. King’s Unfinished Revolution>>

US Has “Much Left To Do” On Racism: Segregation Worse Now Than In 70s>>

Policy Directions: Race, Poverty, and Housing>>
  Profiles of Risk No. 11: Race and Housing Instability>>
 The Rise of Residential Segregation by Income>>