Author: Marc V. Levine
In 65 charts and tables, this study examines how Black communities in the nation’s 50 largest metropolitan areas fare on measures such as residential segregation; income, poverty, and intergenerational economic mobility; employment and earnings; the racial composition of private-sector economic decision-makers; mass incarceration; educational attainment; school segregation; and health care outcomes. The charts and tables permit readers from metropolitan areas across the country to examine how the status of their region’s Black community compares to the nation’s other large metropolitan areas on all of these indicators. Where is Black household income the highest? What metro area has the lowest Black male or female employment rate? Which metro area posts the highest Black incarceration rate? Where is racial segregation in schooling the most intense? All these questions –and many more—are answered in this study.
Our particular emphasis is on Milwaukee, which we argue represents the archetype of modern-day metropolitan racial apartheid and inequality. On virtually all key measures of Black community well-being, Milwaukee ranks at or near the bottom when ranked against other large metropolitan areas. Moreover, when we examine historical trends in some key areas, the results are equally grim: Black Milwaukee is generally worse off today than it was 40 or 50 years ago.