JCCI 2011 Race Relations Progress Report 3
Race Relations Progress Report
Review Committee waschaired by
Committee members included:
E x e c u t i v e
S u m m a r y
Welcome to a dening document. This year’s
Race Relations Progress Report
provides readers with specics about
racial and ethnic disparities, and perhaps more importantly, whether disparities change or not over the years. Anexample of a racial disparity is the gap between white ninth graders graduating from high school on time morefrequently than black ninth-graders. In 2011, 82 percent of white students graduated on time while 66 percent of
black students did the same. Education is not the only area where disparities dene our community. The following
pages measure racial and ethnic disparities across six elements of community life: education, employment and income,neighborhoods and housing, health outcomes, justice and the legal system, and political and civic engagement.If you’ve ever wondered if life is different for whites and blacks, then this document is for you. Similarly, if you’ve
ever thought about how Hispanic residents fare in Jacksonville, then this document is for you. And nally, if you havewondered whether the nancial collapse of 2008 and the slow recovery from the Great Recession affect residents
differently, then read on. Data reported for every racial and ethnic group are not always available, although this reportprovides numbers for as many groups as possible.
Some disturbing specics about the lives of Jacksonville’s residents are emerging in these pages. First, the
percentage of children living in low-income households increased for all races. The unemployment rate for whitesincreased at a higher rate than for blacks (p. 8); however, the black rate remains the highest of racial groups. Hispanicunemployment increased at a much higher rate than for blacks and whites. A higher percentage of black and white
families are nding the cost of housing is no longer affordable given their income. Similarly, the median household
income for both blacks and whites decreased. This meant that the gap in median household income between white and black actually narrowed in 2010. A decrease in disparity might appear healthy, and yet in this case the gap narrowed because both whites and blacks saw less income than the previous year.The trend lines in the
2011 Race Relations Progress Report
tell stories about Jacksonville. You’ll see the large increases in
black voters turning out for the 2011 mayoral election, on page 16, one factor in the election of Jacksonville’s rst black
mayor. The exciting election energized voters, suggesting that when Jacksonville residents are moved to act, they do.There is evidence of action and positive results throughout this report. The fact that a black baby is twice as likelyto die compared to a white baby is clear, on page 12; and yet, the disparity is narrowing. The Hispanic-white gap ininfant mortality rates increased, however. The same page details that HIV transmission rates decreased for all races.
Positive trends demonstrate an important truth about Jacksonville: when residents decide to solve aproblem together, conditions improve for everyone.
The positive trend lines in the Health section are due, in part,to grassroots activism. Several faith communities, for example, started health ministries dedicated to continuing theconversation about HIV/AIDS and educating our community about infant mortality.Another set of positive trend lines are graduation rates. In 2007, 53 percent of black students were graduating
“on time”. Four years later, 66 percent are graduating “on time”. This indicator suggests another important truth:
investments create improvements. Philanthropists, parents, students, artists, human service agencies, and mostimportantly, educators, have focused on the graduation rate in recent years. Now the rates for all students areimproving and the gaps between the races are closing, if slowly. Another positive? A 14 percent drop in the number of blacks who feel racism is a problem in Jacksonville.
Finally, all your questions about how Hispanics, whites, blacks, Asians and others live and experience Jacksonvilledifferently will not be answered here. This document is meant to be the rst step in a journey, offering a birds-eye view
of how racial disparities shape schools, people’s health, the courts, their neighborhoods, and families. It is only through
recognition and awareness of these specics that you and other readers can work to narrow these gaps and differences.
Disparities do disappear, as evidenced in these pages, when you and other concerned citizens get involved.
Michael Aubin James BoyleRod BrownTina Comstock
Coretta HillTru LeverettePaul MartinezDan MerkanKen MiddletonDoug PickettMarcelle PolednikTom SerwatkaMichael WacholzCherrise WilksDottie Wilson