Black families pondering a move to the Midwest might want to read this, especially if they have young children. According to a national report, Wisconsin has been ranked the worst state in the country when it comes to racial disparities for children. LOUISIANA IS NOT RANKED TOO MUCH BETTER.
The Annie E. Casey Foundation, a 66-year-old charitable organization concentrating on family issues and well-being, spearheaded the study. “Race for Results: Building a Path to Opportunity for All Children” scored states according to 12 different factors, from educational access to socioeconomic status and home life.
Wisconsin scored a 238 on its ability to prepare black children for educational and financial success, the lowest of all states (the average score was 345). Interestingly, Wisconsin was ranked 10th overall in its preparation for white children.
Economically, the Casey report notes an immense difference in the the levels of economic security of children of different races in the state. While 70% of white children live in households above 200% of the poverty level ($47,700 for a family of four), only 20% of black children live in similar households.
The implications of such disparities cannot be understated. “Research has shown that growing up in chronic poverty contributes directly to stress at a level that can affect children’s health, brain development and social and emotional well-being — a response known as ‘toxic stress,” notes the report.