Black families see bigger loss of income in recession

Most Americans have felt the sting of the recent economic depression, however no group has felt the massive loss of overall income more than African-Americans. Dubbed the “Great Recession,” a recent Economic Policy Institute report shows that the country’s economic woes have effected black households more than their white counterparts.

An 83 percent drop in median black household income, from $13,450 in 2004 to $2,170 in 2009, is more than triple the rate of the average white household income which showed a loss of 24 percent.

WATCH MSNBC’S COVERAGE OF THIS ISSUE HERE
[NBCVIDEO source=”UNIWIDGET” video=”http://widgets.nbcuni.com/singleclip/singleclip_v1.swf?CXNID=1000004.08052NXC&WID=4a784acd2b1a7e80&clipID=1340379″ w=”400″ h=”400″]

“Even as the income gap had been closing, between African-American and white households, the wealth gap has been consistently growing,” said The Nation Columnist Melissa Harris-Perry. “So even as we were making more money on the dollar per white household, black households were still having less overall wealth.”

Perry suggests that although the recent recession has created a large economic disparity between the races, the income gap is actually attributed to policies that were put in place, during the New Deal. Policies that caused African-American assets, such as their homes, essentially to be worth less.

“African-Americans were shut out of some of the first home ownership opportunities,” she said.

Share