Equity Profiles are produced in partnership with leaders working for equitable and sustainable regional and state futures. Each profile presents demographic trends and assess how well regions are doing to ensure its diverse residents can participate in the region's economic vitality, contribute to the readiness of the workforce, and connect to the region's assets and opportunities. If you are interested in producing an Equity Profile for your community, please contact Sarah Treuhaft at firstname.lastname@example.org.
April 26, 2017
Grand Rapids is an increasingly diverse city. While it has experienced some overall population loss over the last decade, communities of color have significantly grown – and their ability to participate and thrive is central to the city’s success. This profile shows how equitable growth is the path to sustained economic prosperity in the region. It was developed with the support of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to assist local community groups, elected officials, planners, business leaders, funders, and others working to build a stronger and more equitable city. Read the full profile.
April 23, 2017
Long Island – defined as Nassau and Suffolk counties – is rapidly diversifying. Today, one in three Long Island residents is a person of color – up from roughly one in 10 residents in 1980. Black Long Islanders, who were largely excluded from the massive federally subsidized suburban development that characterizes Long Island, continue to face barriers to full social, economic, and political inclusion. This profile shows how persistent segregation and racial disparities in wealth, housing, educational attainment and many other areas is costing Long Island billions of dollars in potential economic growth each year. The accompanying policy brief provides a series of recommendations designed to close the racial wealth divide which would result in a major boost to Long Island’s economy. It was produced by PolicyLink and PERE, with support from Citi Community Development, the Long Island Community Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Read the policy brief and the full profile.
Media: Long Island is Missing More than $24 Billion (Next City); Report: Racial Inequities Cost LI’s Economy Billions Each Year (Newsday)
April 20, 2017
New Orleans’ incredible diversity can be a tremendous economic asset if people of color are fully included as workers, entrepreneurs, and innovators. However, while the city’s economy is showing signs of resurgence after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, rising inequality, stagnant wages, and persistent racial inequities place its long-term economic future at risk. This equity profile was developed with the support of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to support local community groups, elected officials, planners, business leaders, funders, and others working to build a stronger and more equitable city. Read the full profile.
Media: Mayor Mitch Landrieu Unveils 'Equity Strategy' in Bid for More Just Government (The New Orleans Advocate)
April 17, 2017
Fresno is the nation’s top agricultural county, yet it struggles with slow growth, high unemployment, and an economy dominated by low-wage jobs and few pathways into the middle class. While communities of color account for 68 percent of the population — up from 38 percent in 1980 — the county’s racial inequities persist across all indicators of community health and well-being. This health equity and inclusive growth profile and accompanying policy brief were developed in partnership with the Leadership Counsel for Justice and Accountability, and with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. They provide unique data and actionable solutions for residents, advocates, funders, business leaders, and policymakers seeking to reduce racial inequities and build a stronger Fresno. Read the policy brief and the full profile.
March 2, 2017
While the nation is projected to become a people-of-color majority by the year 2044, Los Angeles reached that milestone in the 1980s. Los Angeles’ diversity is a major asset in the global economy, but inequities and disparities are holding the region back. Closing racial gaps in economic opportunity and outcomes will be key to the region’s future. This equity profile examines demographic trends and indicators of equitable growth in Los Angeles county, highlighting strengths and areas of vulnerability in relation to the goal of building a strong, resilient economy. It was developed by PolicyLink and the Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE) to support the Weingart Foundation, other funders, advocacy groups, elected officials, planners, business leaders, and others working to build a stronger and more equitable region. Read the summary and the full profile.
June 24, 2015
The Detroit region is undergoing growth and change. After losing approximately 156,000 people between 2000 and 2010, the region is projected to reverse its recent losses and grow by about 5 percent over the next 30 years. People of color will make up a growing share of the population, with much of that growth propelled by Latinos and Asians. An infusion of new public and private investments along with middle-wage job growth is also fueling an economic recovery, what some have called a Detroit Renaissance. However, not everyone will benefit unless business, community, and political leaders work together to connect people of color to jobs, business opportunities, quality education and career training, and healthy homes and neighborhoods. Download the equity profile and summary.
June 18, 2015
With a median household income of $110,292, Fairfax County, Virginia is one of the wealthiest counties in the nation—but not all residents share in this economic prosperity. As its population has grown and diversified over the past 25 years, inequities in income and opportunity by race and geography have also increased. Given that communities of color are expected to increase from 45 to 72 percent of the population by 2040, taking concrete steps to create pathways for the communities being left behind to connect to education and good jobs is critical for the county’s economic future. This study was produced in partnership with the County and other local leaders to support their efforts to build a stronger and more equitable county. Read the summary and the full profile.
Media: Fairfax County Faces Stark Stats on Income Inequality (Next City)
April 22, 2015
The Bay Area is booming, but a rising tide economy is not lifting up its low-income communities and communities of color. As communities of color continue to drive growth and change in the region, addressing wide racial inequities and ensuring people of color can fully participate as workers, entrepreneurs, and innovators is an urgent priority. Our analysis finds that the regional economy could have been $117 billion stronger in 2012 absent its racial gaps in income and employment. This profile, produced for The San Francisco Foundation, describes the region’s demographic transformation and performance on a series of equity indicators. Read the summary (web version/download PDF) and the full profile (web version/download PDF) and explore indicators in the Atlas.
Media: Study Finds S.F.’s Ethnic Diversity Dwindling (SF Chronicle); A Startling Map of How Much Whiter San Francisco Will Be in 2040 (CityLab); S.F. Could Be Much Whiter in 25 Years, While the Rest of Region Gets More Diverse (KQED News); Study Shows San Francisco Getting Less Diverse (KGO 810 News); San Francisco Poised to be "Whitest County" in Bay Area (NBC Bay Area); SF Is on Track to Be the Whitest County in the Region (SF Curbed)
March 31, 2015
As the Research Triangle Region undergoes a profound demographic transformation, ensuring that communities of color are full and active participants in the region’s economy is critical to its success and prosperity. This profile, produced in partnership with the Triangle J and Kerr-Tarr regional Councils of Governments and guided by a 26-member advisory committee, describes how the 13-county regional economy could have been about $20 billion stronger in 2012 absent its large racial economic gaps, and presents strategies to put all residents on the path toward reaching their full potential. Download the full profile and summary.
Media: Inequality Threaten's Triangle's Rise (News and Observer), Report: Triangle Has Room For Improvement To Address Racial Disparities (WUNC Public Radio)
February 11, 2015
The Cape Fear region in North Carolina is experiencing a demographic transformation characterized by a diversifying younger population and a rapidly growing senior population that is predominantly White. To secure a thriving economy for the decades to come, the region must tap the economic potential of its growing young population. Building education and career pathways for all and ensuring young workers are prepared for the jobs of the future are key strategies for inclusive growth in the region. Download the profile and summary.
Media: Community, Business Leaders Discuss Inequalities and Growth (WilmingtonBiz.com)
December 4, 2014
The Piedmont Triad region in North Carolina—covering 12 counties and home to the cities of Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and High Point—is a growing region whose demographics are rapidly changing. Communities of color are driving growth, and have increased from 20 to 33 percent of the population since 1980. Ensuring its diverse residents can participate in the regional economy and contribute to stronger job growth and broadly shared prosperity is critical for the region’s future. Growing good jobs, investing in its workforce, and infusing economic inclusion into economic development and growth strategies are promising strategies. Download the profile and summary.
December 2, 2014
The Omaha-Council Bluffs region has a relatively strong and resilient economy, with overall low unemployment and steady job growth. At the same time, wages have stagnated for most workers and many communities of color face barriers to accessing good jobs, living wages, and the education needed for the jobs of the future. Increasing connections to good jobs, raising the floor for low-wage work, and building communities of opportunity metro-wide are key strategies to shift the region towards equitable growth. Download the profile and summary, and read this post.
Media: Report Paints 'Stark' Picture of Economic Consequences of Omaha Area's Racial Gaps (Omaha World Herald), Study: Not Everyone Benefiting From Strong Local Economy (Daily Nonpareil), As Demographics Change, Groups Look to Increase Equity in Opportunities (Omaha Public Radio), Report Says Racial Gaps Cost Omaha Area Nearly $4B (SFgate.com)
October 13, 2014
Houston-Galveston is characterized by overall economic strength and resilience, but wide racial gaps in income, health, and opportunity coupled with declining wages, a shrinking middle class, and rising inequality place the region’s economic success and future at risk. Our analysis showed the region already stands to gain a great deal from addressing racial inequities. If racial gaps in income had been closed in 2012, the regional economy would have been $243.3 billion stronger: a 54 percent increase.Download the equity profile, summary, and addendum with the GDP analysis.
June 11, 2014
Communities of color are driving Southeast Florida’s population growth, and their ability to participate and thrive is central to the region’s economic success. But wide racial gaps in income, health, and opportunity place its future at risk. Creating good jobs, connecting youth and vulnerable workers to training and career pathways, and increasing access to economic opportunities can secure a bright economic future for the region. Download the equity profile and summary.
Media: South Florida Least Affordable for Housing, Studies Show (SunSentinal)
October 29, 2013
While Kansas City's regional economy is relatively resilient, inequities in educational attainment and economic opportunity for its black and Latino communities place its economy at risk. The process of developing this profile helped build a broader coalition for equitable growth that includes the Mid-America Regional Council (a regional planning agency), Kansas City Regional Equity Network, and Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce. Download the equity profile and summary.
Media: Racial, Ethnic Inequities in Kansas City Region Threaten its Future, Racial Inequality Threatens Kansas City Economy, Kansas City’s Future Depends on Overcoming a Racial Divide, Reducing Inequality Key to Spurring Economic Growth in KC, Expert Says
February 20, 2013
Our analysis showed that communities of color are driving growth and change in the Ocean State – growing from 7 percent of the population in 1980 to 24 percent of the population today – yet face barriers accessing quality employment. It inspired Governor Chafee’s Executive Order on Diversity, aimed at increasing opportunities for people of color to access government jobs and business contracts. Download the equity profile and summary.
Media: Study Finds Racial Gaps Putting RI’s Economy, Future at Risk, R.I. Urged to Focus on Homegrown Firms, Governor Chafee Joins Sustainable Rhode Island Consortium for Release of Reports on State's Economic Development Data and Conditions of Social Equity