National Urban League Report Says Black America Is Still in Crisis

The annual report compares equality of whites, Blacks and Latinos.

The National Urban League released its annual State of Black America report and national equality index, which measures how African-Americans and Latinos compare with whites in education, economics, health, social justice and civic engagement.

In an interview with before the release, NUL president Marc Morial said that Black America is in a state of crisis for various reasons, from high unemployment to the shooting deaths of unarmed African-American men.

"We're also in crisis because of the continuing assaults on voting rights, widening economic inequality gaps and partisan education debates taking place over the reauthorization of Elementary and Secondary Education Act," Morial said.

The equality index for African-Americans is 72.2 percent, compared to a revised 2014 index of 71.5 percent, the report found, and the Black median household income was about 60 percent of whites, or $34,815 compared to $57,684.

"I'd like to be here reporting to each and every one of you that equality is flourishing. I'd like to be here reporting that equal opportunity is abundant and flowing. I'd like to be able to say that racism is dead and gone forever and ever from American life," Morial said at an event to roll out the report. "But the reality is that we cannot. And the reality is we have this obligation, this duty, this essential role to report the facts and the truth and how it is today even if those facts and that truth are extremely painful."

There were some increases in the equality index in the areas of social justice (from 56 percent to 60.6 percent) and health (78.2 percent to 79.8 percent), the latter of which Morial attributes to the success of the Affordable Care Act. The report also features a new section that compares educational proficiency on a state-by-state basis, but overall, the education index fell from 76.7 percent to 76.1 percent. Civic engagement also decreased from 104.7 percent to 104 percent.

Follow Joyce Jones on Twitter: @BETpolitichick.

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(Photo: Courtesy of the National Urban League)

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