NPR, September 18, 2020, How The Pandemic Is Widening The Racial Wealth Gap
Latino, Black and Native American households have reported serious financial problems since the coronavirus pandemic. The worsening conditions within the disproportionate financial impact on communities of color reflects the pre-existing racial disparities in wealth.
Sixty percent of Black households are facing serious financial problems since the pandemic began, according to a national poll released this week by NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. That includes 41% who say they’ve used up most or all their savings, while an additional 10% had no savings before the outbreak.
Latinos and Native Americans are also disproportionately affected by the pandemic’s economic impact. Seventy-two percent of Latino and 55% of Native American respondents say their households are facing serious financial problems, compared with 36% of whites.
“The thing that immediately struck me was how large the gap was by race for the people who said they were facing serious problems,” says Valerie Wilson, director of the Program on Race, Ethnicity and the Economy at the Economic Policy Institute.
The pandemic’s disproportionate financial impact on communities of color reflects — and is worsening — existing racial disparities in wealth, she adds.