New Report Offers Solutions to Wealth Divide

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By AFRO Staff

The racial wealth divide is greater today than it was nearly four decades ago and trends
point to its continued widening. A new report, “Ten Solutions to Bridge the Racial
Wealth Divide,” released by the Institute for Policy Studies and Kirwan Institute for the
Study of Race and Ethnicity with the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, takes
stock of the problem and offers ten bold solutions.

“Implementing the policies in this report are essential to balancing the historical
injustices that created the racial wealth divide in a manner that is universal but race
conscious,” said Darrick Hamilton, report co-author and executive director of the Kirwan
Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at The Ohio State University.

The solutions outlined in this report are designed to strike at the structural underpinnings
holding the racial wealth divide in place while offering a warning against false solutions.

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Ten Solutions to Bridge the Racial Wealth Divide:

  1. Baby Bonds
  2. Guaranteed Employment and a Significantly Higher Minimum Wage
  3. Affordable Housing
  4. Medicare for All
  5. Postal Banking
  6. Higher Taxes for the Ultra-Wealthy
  7. Fixes to Upside-Down Tax Expenditures
  8. A Congressional Committee on Reparations
  9. Data Collection on Race and Wealth
  10. A Racial Wealth Analysis

This report comes in the wake of a previous study, “ Dreams Deferred: How Enriching
the 1 Percent Widens the Racial Wealth Divide ,” and is intended to present a clear and
actionable menu of public policies to address the racial wealth divide.

“If the past several decades are to teach us anything about race and wealth, it should be
that the racial wealth divide will not be closed without a structural change to the status
quo,” said Chuck Collins, co-author of the report, director of IPS’s Program on Inequality
and co-editor of Inequality.org. “Individual behavioral action is not the answer to address
structurally established barriers nor is the patient aspirant idea that this problem will fix itself.”

“We offer ten bold solutions broken into three categories: Programs, Power and Process,”
said report co-author Dedrick Asante-Muhammad, Chief of Equity and Inclusion at the
National Community Reinvestment Coalition. “They are presented in hopes of inspiring
lawmakers, activists, organizers, academics, journalists and others to think boldly about
collectively taking on this incredibly important challenge.”