Saturday, November 1, 2014
The REAL Reason Why Lower-Income Blacks Are Being Pushed Out of Major Cities
An article recently published in the Washington Post addressed the issue of what is causing major metropolitan cities to lose more and more of their African-American population. The article points to the increase in college graduates migrating to large cities such as Austin, Chicago, New York, San Francisco and Washington D.C., creating income inequalities in these cities which are driving out low-income African Americans. But are they correct?
Does the migration of college graduates really make cities less tolerant?
One example used by the Washington Post was Austin, Texas, where its African-American population declined by 5.4 percent between 2000 and 2010 as the city quickly grew over 20 percent and became the third fastest-growing city in the U.S. According to the Post, this has cast a shadow on the city's reputation as a tolerant place to live. Other examples were given that included Chicago, New York, San Francisco and Washington D.C. But is this fair?
According to an analysis by William Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C., the migration of young adults to Austin are between the ages 25 to 34 and young adults with college degrees. Frey pointed out that "Twenty-somethings traditionally have the highest rates of mobility, and college graduates typically are more willing to move out of state for jobs because they tend to compete for them in national markets." In addition, Austin has been aggressive in its effort to attract talent. Austin also has high-tech industries, universities, and culture that attracts college grads. Other cities like D.C., Seattle, San Francisco, and Chicago also happen to be among the top 10 cities in the U.S. In addition, Chicago, New York and D.C. are still among the highest African-American populated cities in the U.S.
What is needed
Sadly, the facts show that as more college graduates move into these cities, it does raise the quality and cost of living which makes it more difficult for low-wage earners to make a living. Instead of blame, perhaps what is really needed are more colleges to recruit, more companies and foundations to offer scholarships, and more city governments to work harder to offer programs that will help African Americans obtain educations and degrees that will help them compete in these markets. No matter Republicans or Democrats, it's every one's responsibility to make sure all are offered equal opportunity to make a decent living.
To read the Washington Post article, visit www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2014/10/29/college-graduates-are-pushing-african-americans-out-of-cities/