Study Finds 27:1 Homelessness Disparity in Madison
We are all aware that Madison’s communities of color are significantly more susceptible to poverty, employment, educational barriers, and incarceration than their white counterparts. But perhaps one of the most severe racial disparities in Madison is the makeup of its homeless population.
According to a new city housing report, African-American individuals in families are 27 times more likely than white individuals in families to be homeless. This factor of 27 is the higher than any other type of disparity in Madison, when compared to statistics from the Race to Equity Report.
While the disparity in homelessness for Black Madisonians is the worst, such issues exist for all races in our city. Latino individuals in families in Madison are 7 times more likely to be homeless than white ones; for Native Americans, this factor is 15.
We must do the work to understand and advocate for the change we need to combat poverty as an expression of racism and state violence. You can help by Joining our Coalition of Supporters, or by donating here.
According to Matt Watcher, Madison’s Housing Initiatives Specialist, a major cause of these disparities in homelessness is differences in income. Other contributing factors to these disparities are racial discrimination and Madison’s 11:1 disparity in incarceration for adults, which increase the likelihood of people of color being rejected by employers and landlords due to their criminal records.
It will take changes in our economic system, our criminal justice system, our housing system, and our local culture to fix this issue - shifts that are only possible with people power!
In order to make any progress, we have to Build our collective understanding and Build collective analysis to advocate for better collaborative solutions.
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