Income inequality and the black family

Screen-Shot-2015-03-26-at-12.52.30-AMBy Alana-Rose Davis

The racial divide was and is such a problem that it has caused income inequality within black families.

A white household will make four times more than a black household. How did this problem arise? In the 1970s, a black man only carried home 69% of the income of a white man.  Because of this, black Americans needed more government assistance.

But welfare benefits were less for a two-parent household because policy-makers thought that if there is double income, less aid would be needed. In actuality, black families were not above the poverty line because of the wage gap.

If a black woman decided to marry, many of the support programs which she relied on to help her would be discontinued. Marriage was once a symbol of union and support of a man and a woman. However, there was a financial disincentive for black mothers who needed to support their children. Because of this, many black women decided it was counterproductive to marry.

Over the years, this policy created a huge gap when it came to family income. Eventually, the government passed laws to address the racial wage disparity. One side effect of this was that black people no longer saw marriage as important and many fathers were absent within the family dynamic.

In 2011, white households had $111,146 in wealth holdings, while black households had just $7,113. This is just one example of how systematic oppression affected income inequality within the black family.


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