Black businesses are fighting for their lives. We can’t afford to lose them

The Washington Post, November 20, 2020, Black Businesses are Fighting for Their Lives. We Can’t Afford to Lose Them

These businesses stabilize communities, but structural racism makes their struggles harder, and the pandemic forced many to shutter.

In two separate tests, the nonprofit National Community Reinvestment Coalition found that Black people seeking small-business loans under coronavirus relief programs were treated less favorably than Whites — even when they had stronger financial profiles.

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Redlining and Neighborhood Health

Before the pandemic devastated minority communities, banks and government officials starved them of capital.

Lower-income and minority neighborhoods that were intentionally cut off from lending and investment decades ago today suffer not only from reduced wealth and greater poverty, but from lower life expectancy and higher prevalence of chronic diseases that are risk factors for poor outcomes from COVID-19, a new study shows.

The new study, from the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) with researchers from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee Joseph J. Zilber School of Public Health and the University of Richmond’s Digital Scholarship Lab, compared 1930’s maps of government-sanctioned lending discrimination zones with current census and public health data.

Table of Content

  • Executive Summary
  • Introduction
  • Redlining, the HOLC Maps and Segregation
  • Segregation, Public Health and COVID-19
  • Methods
  • Results
  • Discussion
  • Conclusion and Policy Recommendations
  • Citations
  • Appendix

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