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How to Put Racial Equity at the Center of Neighborhood Investment [housingmatters.urban.org]

 

By Kimberley Burrowes, Housing Matters, February 19, 2020

The effects of discriminatory policies limit opportunities for people of color and their communities. The lingering effects of redlining and racial covenants have left many historic, once-thriving Black neighborhoods in need of revitalization as hypervacancy, blight, and neighborhood social and economic distress restrict opportunities for residents to build wealth for future generations.

New investments can revitalize neighborhoods that have been historically excluded. But as policymakers and planners seek to revitalize Black neighborhoods, they must confront the systemic disinvestment embedded in the history of these places and promote racial equity.

Racial equity ensures that a person’s race does not determine their opportunities or outcomes for success. Putting racial equity at the center of revitalization efforts acknowledges the need to dismantle the historic injustices in communities. This lens not only changes the usual approach to neighborhood investment, but it also changes the usual results.

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