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June 11, 2015 / Ciara Myers, Editor

How history has shaped movement of the region’s residents

HOUSING/REGION
Discriminatory housing policies and income disparities have historically shaped trends for where District-born residents have moved. Greater Greater Washington breaks down the ways in which our region’s population has been shaped by disparities throughout history. (GGW, 6/11)

The clear differences between how black and white residents born in the District have moved around the United States highlight important elements of our history. The steady flow of white Washingtonians out of the city, which accelerated starting in the 1940s, reflects a population taking advantage of public policies designed to help them build wealth.

Meanwhile, black Washingtonians’ lack of mobility illustrates how policy makers discriminated against blacks for at least another three decades while their white counterparts solidified their middle-class, home-owning status. These charts tell the story of blatant institutional racism targeting blacks 40 years ago, not 400.

Access to education, employment, wealth, and safety are closely tied to geography. It’s imperative that our current and future public policies foster access to these opportunities for black Washingtonians and other traditionally excluded groups so that the next version of these charts conveys progress rather than continued inequality.

VIRGINIA | Alexandria’s Democratic primary race this week resulted in a few surprises; long-time Mayor William Euille was defeated and voter turnout was surprisingly low. In the Arlington County Board elections, the two unlikely winners hope to make affordable housing a bigger priority. (WaPo, 6/10 and ARLnow, 6/10)

HOMELESSNESS | Budget Makes Significant Investments to Put District on Track to End Homelessness (DCFPI, 6/10)

MENTAL HEALTH | An overwhelming number of incarcerated individuals are also battling mental health disorders. Some jails are looking for better ways to serve the growing population of mentally ill prisoners. (Atlantic, 6/8)

At least 400,000 inmates currently behind bars in the United States suffer from some type of mental illness—a population larger than the cities of Cleveland, New Orleans, or St. Louis—according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness. NAMI estimates that between 25 and 40 percent of all mentally ill Americans will be jailed or incarcerated at some point in their lives.

POVERTY/TRANSIT | Long Commutes are Awful, Especially for the Poor (Atlantic, 6/10)

PHILANTHROPY | Ford Foundation, the second biggest foundation in the country, has announced that it is overhauling its grantmaking to focus entirely on inequality. They are also doubling the amount they give in general operating support. (Chronicle, 6/11)


A brief history of “I.”

– Ciara

 

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