Mayor Soglin's Blog

Racial Disparities and the Race to Equity Project

October 2, 2013 4:12 PM

The Wisconsin Council on Children and Families has completed its much awaited report Race to Equity:A Baseline Report on the State of Racial Disparities in Dane County. The report confirms we have a lot of challenges as we work to improve our community for everyone.

This study confirms that while Madison is a wonderful City for many of us, particularly white families, it's not that great of a place for families of color, specifically black. It shows that while white individuals here do better on measures of health, education and employment than others nationwide, black individuals here generally fare worse than their counterparts nationwide.

The local jobless rate in 2011 nationwide,for blacks was twice the rate for whites. However, in Dane County it was 25.2% for blacks and only 4.8% for whites., That is a disturbing statistic.

I was pleased to be able to attend the YWCA Racial Justice Summit today, to meet with Erica Nelson, Wisconsin Council on Children and Families, Project Director as well as hundreds of other committed people.  I am confident many of those who attended will continue to partner with us as we work to address this problem.

We know we have work to do and although this report has some startling statistics, I am pleased that we have the data, and we know our challenge.

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