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Racial equity can be defined as "the condition that would be achieved if one's race identity no longer influenced how one fares." (from "Awake to Woke to Work: Building a Race Equity Culture" by Equity in the Center). This collection focuses on racial equity and also includes works that explore the larger diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) framework. Our aim is to raise awareness about funding for racial equity efforts as well as activities in the social sector meant to realize racial equity. The collection is part of Candid's Funding for racial equity special issue website.

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"Endless Walk!" by Rayhane saber licensed through Unsplash

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Justice Is The Foundation: Assessing Philanthropy’s Commitment to Racial Equity & Justice in Education (2024)

February 1, 2024

The Schott Foundation for Public Education worked with Candid, a center for nonprofit resources and tools, over the past four years to critically examine K-12 education philanthropy's grantmaking priorities. Our project, Justice Is The Foundation, assesses the collective philanthropic impact of giving in the education sector through a lens of racial equity and racial justice. We believe that education philanthropy has an important and irreplaceable role to play in building a more just and equitable society: public schools touch 90% of students in the U.S., are often de facto centers of community and neighborhood cohesion, and have been a focal point of racial justice movements since Reconstruction. In early 2021, Schott launched this project with the first data set from our collaboration, Candid's data on grants made from 2017-2019. To ensure a more reliable picture of the kinds of grants we are examining—comparatively small slices of a much large sector—and to account for different grant cycles, we selected a three-year period for study. In our second report, released in August 2022, we covered grants made from 2018-2020. This current report, the third in our series, covers 2019-2021: for the first time fully encompassing the racial justice uprisings of 2020 and philanthropy's response.

A Conceptual Map of Structural Racism in Health Care

October 25, 2023

Longstanding racial and ethnic disparities in health care experiences contribute to profoundly inequitable health and life outcomes in the United States. Researchers, policymakers, practitioners, advocates, and communities seeking to eradicate these disparities must understand and intervene in their root causes. In this brief, we develop a conceptual map of structural racism in health care that demonstrates the connections between (1) mental models that, in often unnoticed ways, guide how society thinks and acts; (2) inequitable structures, including laws and policies that codify the distribution of and access to resources; and (3) racial and ethnic disparities in health care experiences and outcomes.

Survey: Public Health Employees Eager to Address Racism as A Public Health Crisis

October 17, 2023

As the providers of essential public health services, the state and local government public health workforce is uniquely positioned to take on the root causes of structural racism in communities nationwide. This research brief analyzing data from the 2021 Public Health Workforce Interests and Needs Survey (PH WINS) provides the first exploration of government public health employees' views on addressing racism as a public health crisis, how much they have been involved in such efforts, and the resources and supports they believe they need to take on racial justice work within public health agency contexts.Key findings:Nearly three-quarters (72%) of state and local government public health employees believe that addressing racism as a public health crisis should be part of their work within their agencies. However, only about 4 in 10 (39%) employees reported being highly engaged in such efforts.A strong majority of public health agency executives (81%) believe that addressing racism should be part of their work.Over half of the government public health workforce (58%) believes they lack adequate funding to address racism as a public health crisis. Nationally, employees reported needing more training, community engagement, and support from agency leadership to address racism in their work.

The Next Reconstruction: Examining the Call for a National Reparations Program

March 30, 2023

In this brief, we examine the evolution of reparations proposals in the United States, connect a national reparations program to the United Nations' international human rights standards around reparations, and discuss the potential of a national reparations program to close long-standing racial gaps in wealth, housing, education, criminal justice, and other areas. We focus in part on the reparations commission proposed by H.R. 40, the most comprehensive reparations legislation in US history. We also make recommendations for strengthening the research and policy-development infrastructure for reparations.We argue that in addition to compensation for past harms, conceptualizations of reparations should involve looking at present practices, policies, and barriers to economic security and wealth building for Black Americans. We can account for historical injustices and prioritize how they have contributed to and exacerbated present inequalities while considering how current policies continue to exacerbate and reproduce those inequalities.In addition to exploring early reparations efforts in the United States, we review selected policy proposals that have involved efforts to make progress on reparations for Black Americans, analyze the current reparations policy landscape, and recommend ways researchers can identify approaches to make reparations effective at eliminating key racial gaps for Black Americans. This research can inform policy discussions and analyses of reparations, especially as governments continue to explore them.

“It’s Not For Us”: Understanding How Meta-Oppression Influences Black Americans’ Experiences with the Credit System

March 23, 2023

For many Black Americans the doors to critical wealth-building tools that easily open for their white counterparts are locked or obstructed because of centuries-long discriminatory policies and practices. Without these same opportunities, Black Americans are often left behind, perpetually playing against a stacked deck.Structural racism not only shapes the outcomes that people experience in all sectors of life, but it also has psychological effects on what Black Americans think is possible. This psychological stress from dealing with persistent structural racism across society is called meta-oppression, a concept developed by Dr. Jacqueline Scott.Through a study of Black Chicago residents' experiences with the credit system, we found that Black Americans internalized feelings of guilt, hopelessness, and despair, all of which hindered their willingness to further engage with the credit system. By illuminating the diverse effects of structural racism on the lives of Black Americans, we hope to reveal key opportunities for policy and practice to interrupt meta-oppression and advance racial equity across society.

How Recognizing Health Disparities for Black People is Important for Change

February 13, 2023

February 1st marked the beginning of Black History Month. The 2023 theme for Black History Month is Black Resistance, an exploration of how African Americans have nurtured and protected Black lives, and fought against historic and current racial inequality. In fact, while Black people have made great contributions and achievements in the United States, they continue to face many health and health care disparities that adversely impact their overall health and well-being. These disparities have been exacerbated by the uneven impacts of the COVID-pandemic, ongoing racism and discrimination, and police violence against and killings of Black people. Moreover, the long history of inequitable health outcomes among Black people reflects the abuses faced during slavery, segregation, mass incarceration and their persistent legacies.

Racial and Ethnic Disparities in K-16 Education in Rhode Island

January 26, 2023

Racial and ethnic disparities have existed in the United States and Rhode Island from its founding. Removal of Native Americans, several centuries of slavery, a century of Jim Crow laws, and residential segregation created large gaps in academic access and attainment for Students of Color. While policies that created segregated schools ended decades ago, America and Rhode Island have yet to see a truly integrated educational system that produces high-quality educational opportunities for all.In the U.S., Black and Latino students have become increasingly segregated from white students over the last 30 years. Black and Latino students generally attend schools in which students are disproportionately Students of Color and high-poverty, while white students attend schools in which students are disproportionately white and low-poverty.Students in schools with high concentrations of low-income students and Students of Color have unequal educational opportunities when compared with the educational opportunities available to students who attend schools that are more diverse or that have mostly higher-income or predominantly white students because the schools they attend have more absences, lower graduation rates, teachers who have less classroom experience, and more teachers who are teaching outside their subject area of expertise.

Black Homeownership: Using Data to Navigate the Road to Equity

January 24, 2023

The United States' long-standing racial homeownership gap needs to be reckoned with. In the past two years, increasing attention has been aimed at removing barriers that keep Black households from buying homes and sustaining homeownership. One of these efforts, the Black Homeownership Collaborative, set an ambitious goal to increase the number of Black homeowners by 3 million by 2030. This brief offers a dashboard to guide stakeholders working to close the racial homeownership gap by increasing the number of Black homeowners. We analyze the latest data to understand whether progress was made in 2020 and 2021 and where more work is needed.

Addressing the Legacies of Historical Redlining: Correlations with Measures of Modern Housing Instability

January 24, 2023

"Redlining" of neighborhoods, one of a number of explicitly racist United States federal housing policies in the mid–twentieth century, blocked Black households and other communities of color from accessing home mortgages—and as a result homeownership—for decades. The practice has been linked to present day racialized neighborhood poverty and ongoing negative impacts on formerly redlined neighborhoods.In an attempt to address or mitigate decades of racist housing policies, some policymakers and jurisdictions are considering reparative policies and otherwise prioritizing Black households and others disenfranchised by past racist housing policies. Given the prominence of redlining maps and analyses that find associations between redlining and negative impacts on neighborhoods, some policy makers have focused on redlined areas as a criteria for qualifying for direct assistance.In this brief, we explore the extent to which historical redlining patterns correlate with current risk of housing instability. Using redlining maps for more than 200 cities digitized by the University of Richmond as a base and a number of instability indicators including the Urban Institute's Emergency Rental Assistance Priority (ERA Priority) Index, eviction filing data from the Eviction Lab, and Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) data, we examine the extent to which redlined areas correlate with concentrations of people who are most at risk of housing instability. It is important to note that the overall practice of restricting access to housing based on race still happens today, but for the purposes of this brief, when we talk about redlining, we mean the legacy of the Federal Housing Administration (FHA).

Centering Racial Justice to strengthen the Public Health Ecosystem

December 15, 2022

The public health field experienced a collective "moment" in 2020, declaring racism a public health crisis in cities, counties, and states across the country. However, since then, too many have slipped back to "business as usual." The new report Centering Racial Justice to Strengthen the Public Health Ecosystem: Lessons from COVID-19 from Prevention Institute and Big Cities Health Coalition calls on us all to reignite our collective commitment to bold transformational change rooted in equity and racial justice.

How Income-Driven Repayment Plans Fail Black Borrowers

November 16, 2022

Approximately 43 million Americans collectively owe $1.6 trillion in federal student loan debt, but this debt is not borne equally by all. Black borrowers are amongst those most negatively impacted by student loans due to the ongoing effects of systemic racism, the inequitable distribution of wealth, a stratified labor marker, and rising college costs.Federal income-driven repayment (IDR) plans are designed to make monthly student loan payments manageable and more affordable for borrowers. Unfortunately, they are often ineffective at reducing a borrower's debt burden over time.Drawing on qualitative data from our National Black Student Debt Study, this brief dives into how existing IDR plans are failing Black borrowers. A higher education should be the key to a better future, but for many Black borrowers who participated in the study, student loans are a lifetime debt sentence.

Keeping promises while keeping score: Gauging the impacts of policy proposals on racial equity

October 11, 2022

This policy brief from the Brookings Institution and the Institute on Race, Power, and Political Economy at The New School examines the impacts of policy proposals enacted in the wake of the 2020 murder of George Floyd and the subesequent protests against systemic racism. Specifically, it looks at what progress has been made by these proposals to increase racial equity.