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Disparity & Inequity

Racial Disparity & Inequity in the Twin Cities

Although the Twin Cities and greater Minnesota has long ranked at or near the top for many quality of life indicators when compared to other major metro areas and all 50 states, our communities also suffer from some of the widest black-white gaps in the nation when it comes to employment, education, housing, and healthcare. These rampant disparities have only been amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic, that has deeply wounded the social, economic, and general health and wellness of African Americans, our indigenous populations, and other communities of color.

At Community Action, we always encourage people to bring about positive change in their communities through education and engagement. Many organizations have been working on these issues for years. These are just a few  working towards realizing racial equity and eliminating racial disparities in the Twin Cities:

Data on Inequity in the Twin Cities

Community Action has long worked to dispel popularly held misperceptions surrounding the issue of poverty by educating the community about the systemic roots of poverty. To fully grasp how poverty disproportionately affects BIPOC members of our communities, we’ve put together a list of data that only begins to illustrate the historic and systemic roots of poverty in America and the Twin Cities and how race and ethnicity are inextricably linked to poverty.

Poverty

Federal Poverty Guidelines

Poverty comparison between Ramsey and Washington counties:

  • Ramsey County has the sixth highest poverty rate among Minnesota’s 87 counties at 14.6%. [poverty rate in the city of St. Paul is 19.4%]
  • By contrast, Washington county has the second lowest poverty rate of Minnesota counties at 4.2%.

Twin Cities poverty rate by racial and ethnic group:

  • American Indian: 31.7% 
  • Black: 25.9% 
  • Hispanic: 16.3% 
  • Asian: 13.4% 
  • White: 5.3%
  • All groups: 8.9%    

 

Median Income

Median Income in Ramsey and Washington counties:

  • The median annual income in Ramsey County is $62,937, ranking it 23rd out of 87 Minnesota counties.
  • Washington County’s median annual income ranks 3rd in the state at $95,840.

Median Annual Income in the Twin Cities by racial and ethnic group:

  • White: $82,688
  • Asian: $78,819
  • Hispanic: $50,000
  • American Indian: $41,917
  • Black: $36,710
  • All Groups: $75,411

 

Cost-Burdened Households

When a household spends 30% or more of its gross monthly income on housing, that is considered a "Cost-Burden Household". People living in households who meet or exceed the 30% threshold struggle to make ends meet, which forces people to make tough decisions, like whether they have to sacrifice healthcare coverage to get food on the table. These trade-offs often lead people to experience lower outcomes of well-being for themselves and their children. 

Percentage of Cost-burdened households in the Twin Cities by racial and ethnic group:

  • Black: 51.5%
  • American Indian: 43.6%
  • Hispanic: 42.9%
  • Asian: 26.0%
  • White: 24.3%
  • All groups: 27.7%  

 

Health Care

Percentage of Minnesotans under the age of 65 in the Twin Cities without healthcare insurance by racial and ethnic group:

  • American Indian: no data
  • Hispanic: 18.8%
  • Black: 6.0%
  • Asian: 5.3%
  • White: 3.1%
  • All groups: 4.9%    

 

Homeownership Rate

Homeownership rate in the Twin Cities by racial and ethnic group:

  • White: 75.3%
  • Asian: 58.3%
  • American Indian: 43.1%
  • Hispanic: 41.6%
  • Black: 25.0%
  • All Groups: 68.3%

 

General Demographics

Percentage of persons of color in Ramsey and Washington Counties:

  • Ramsey County: 38.6%  (3rd most diverse of 87 Minnesota Counties)
  • Washington County: 17.8%  (14th most diverse of 87 Minnesota Counties)

Percentage of persons of color in:

  • Saint Paul: 48.6%  (3rd most diverse of 62 7-county metro cities and towns)
  • Minnesota: 20.4%  (38th most diverse of the 50 states)
  • United States: 40.4%

 

Early Childhood

Percentage of public school children who receive early childhood education before age 5:

Ramsey County
  • St. Paul: 71.4%  (23rd out of 48 Twin Cities public school districts)
  • Roseville: 70.9% (25th out of 48 Twin Cities public school districts)
  • Mounds View Area: 67.0%  (34th out of 48 Twin Cities public school districts)
  • St. Anthony: 66.7%  (66th out of 48 Twin Cities public school districts)
New Brighton
  • White Bear Lake: 64.6%  (40th out of 48 Twin Cities public school districts)
  • North St. Paul/Maplewood/Oakdale: 64.5%  (41st out of 48 Twin Cities public school districts)           
Washington County
  • South Washington: 74.6%  (16th out of 48 Twin Cities public school districts)
  • Stillwater Area: 72.5%  (19th out of 48 Twin Cities public school districts)
  • Mahtomedi: 70.2%  (30th out of 48 Twin Cities public school districts)

Our Impact This Year

  • People Who Received Energy Assistance

    55,886

  • Children Enrolled in Head Start & Early Head Start

    1,422

  • Low-Income People Registered to Vote

    1,320

  • Volunteer Hours

    31,317

© 2020 Community Action Partnership of Ramsey and Washington Counties

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