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OaklandSide: ‘The community will be uplifted’: Oakland’s new skating rink is about more than recreation

OaklandSide, August 9, 2021, ‘The community will be uplifted’: Oakland’s new skating rink is about more than recreation

Sitting on a once-vacant lot near Eastmont Mall, the newly opened UMOJA Outdoor Roller Skating Rink at Liberation Park rings alive with the hum of quad skates and the deep bass of funk music.

Johnson believes the UMOJA rink has the potential to shine a much-needed spotlight on Eastmont, and help to jumpstart other business and cultural activities that can stem the displacement of Black people from the neighborhood. Oakland and San Francisco recently topped a list of the “most intensely gentrified” U.S. cities in a study conducted by the National Community Reinvestment Coalition.

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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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