New group the State of Black Madison Coalition said it is out to “change the plight of African Americans in the community,” and members warned if that doesn’t happen, Madison could see the major problems that plague Beloit and Milwaukee.
The new coalition of African American focused groups, armed with a new report called “The State of Black Madison 2008: Before the Tipping Point,” issued a call to action Tuesday to the entire Madison community.
It said Madison is on the precipice of change and if problems of disparity between whites and blacks are not addressed, the city might, as the one coalition member put it, “plunge into intractable problems that plague most major urban cities.”
The reports details the state of African Americans in Madison, saying if trends from 1990-2005 continue, it will take 265 years for the income gap between blacks and the rest of the Dane County community to disappear.
“A city should be measured by how close the weakest link is to the strongest link. My friends, in Madison we are football fields apart,” said Scott Gray, president and CEO of the Urban League of Greater Madison
African-American city leaders say the black community is in trouble and hope a new report called the State of Black Madison will be a catalyst for change.
The summary report, Before the Tipping Point, was released today by the State of Black Madison Coalition. They based their findings on information from the Center on Wisconsin Strategy and other recent research. Among the discoveries: racial disparity is most prevalent in the areas of criminal justice, education, health care and housing. 37-percent of African Americans in Dane County live in poverty today, as compared to just 11-percent of the community as a whole. And if trends that turned up between 1990-2005 continue, it will take 265 years for the income gap between blacks and the rest of the county to disappear.
Complete report (pdf).