GDP gains with racial equity
Actual gross domestic product (GDP) and projected GDP under a scenario of racial equity in income and employment for the population ages 16 or older, in billions of 2014 dollars. Projected GDP was calculated by estimating the percentage increase in aggregate income if age-adjusted average income (and income distributions) for each racial/ethnic group were the same as for non-Hispanic whites, and applying that percentage increase to actual GDP. GDP measures the dollar value of all goods and services produced in the region. GDP for the nation reported here is equal to the sum of GDP by state, and thus may differ from national GDP reported by other sources. Data represent a 2010-2014 average. For more information, see the data and methods document. | National Equity Atlas Data & Methods: Technical Documentation
Actual GDP and estimated GDP with racial equity in income (billions):
What are the economic benefits of inclusion?
Why it matters
Wage and employment gaps by race (as well as gender) are not only bad for people of color—they hold back the entire economy. Closing these gaps by eliminating discrimination in pay and hiring, boosting education attainment, and ensuring strong and rising wages for low-wage workers is good for families, good for communities, and good for the economy. Rising wages and incomes, particularly for low-income households, leads to more consumer spending, which is a key driver of economic growth and job creation.
Grow an equitable economy: Policies to invest in people and strengthen the economy
- Invest in universal preschool for all three- and four-year olds
- Create workforce training pathways to help lower-wage workers connect to good jobs
- Dismantle barriers to employment
- Raise the floor on low-wage work by increasing the minimum wage or enacting living wage laws, requiring paid sick days, ending wage theft, strengthening workers’ rights to organize, and ensuring fair scheduling
- Ensure entrepreneurs of color can access the capital and know-how to launch and expand their businesses
Tulsa Proves Universal Pre-K Brings Major Economic and Social Returns
Investments in early childhood education have strong, proven economic and social benefits. In 1998, Oklahoma passed legislation offering free high-quality pre-kindergarten to every four-year old in the state. Its enrollment rate is 74 percent, while only 28 percent of all four year-olds nationally are enrolled in a state-funded pre-K program. An in-depth study of Tulsa’s program found that children who enrolled in pre-K would increase their future earnings by tens of thousands of dollars. Low-income students, in particular, would see an earnings increase. For students of all income levels, the benefits of pre-K far outweigh the state’s investment. Read more.