New Research Highlights Broward’s Equity Challenges

Tuesday, February 22, 2022

Urban League of Broward County and Hispanic Unity of Florida release State of Black Broward and State of Hispanic and Immigrant Broward Reports

Fort Lauderdale, FL - Today, the Urban League of Broward County (ULBC) and Hispanic Unity of Florida (HUF) took bold steps to analyze social and economic inequities that exist between racial/ethnic groups through the release of State of Black Broward and State of Hispanic and Immigrant Broward. Funded by The Jim Moran Foundation and produced in partnership with the Florida International University (FIU) Jorge M. Perez Metropolitan Center, the reports examine alarming opportunity gaps in the areas of education, income, health, criminal justice, housing and voter engagement.

The release of these reports aim to (1) provide objective data and information about key economic and social issues in Broward County; (2) analyze data trends based on actions or non-actions; and (3) provide an opportunity for stakeholders to engage the community in dialogue and consider policy recommendations.

The reports cite data over the course of several years that show Broward’s significant shift to a majority-minority county in which Hispanic/Latinos and Black/African Americans account for more than 58 percent of the population. Drawing from dozens of public and private data sources, the reports revealed clear evidence of persistent concentrations of income inequality in Broward’s Black and Hispanic communities. According to the reports, the median household income of Black or African Americans is only 71 percent ($47,863) of White households ($67,280). For Hispanic or Latino households, that gap narrows slightly to 87 percent ($58,522).

The data also illustrates sharp variations in health outcomes among Black and Hispanic groups compared to White groups, including infant mortality and HIV infection rates. “This report is a tool that provides an opportunity for all to pause and reflect on the story of Hispanic and immigrant communities within Broward County, how it has unfolded over the decades, and where we stand today as we plan for a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive future,” said Felipe Pinzon, president and CEO of Hispanic Unity of Florida.

For more than 40 years, ULBC and HUF have been engaged in efforts to examine the experiences and achievements of communities of color, yet stark disparities in outcomes prevail. Guided by a core mission to tackle these inequities, both organizations have committed to democratizing the research–bringing community members into the process of identifying and addressing the disparities highlighted.

“Our intention for this initiative was to develop reports through a racial equity lens and to recognize the intersectionality of these systems, with real people at the center of our discovery,” said Dr. Germaine Smith-Baugh, president and CEO for the Urban League. “We can build a more equitable community, but to do so, we will need to reimagine our approach to gathering data in ways that are more relevant, more useful, more democratic and that mobilize those most impacted to react.”

Funding for the State of Black Broward and State of Hispanic and Immigrant Broward was provided by The Jim Moran Foundation. In 2021, the Foundation awarded a $500,000 grant to each organization to advance racial equity in Broward County. This investment will build the organizations’ capacity to work effectively with stakeholders to lead critical conversations about racial equity and to propose transformative solutions that address them.

“We are grateful for the integrity and leadership of Hispanic Unity of Florida and Urban League of Broward County to offer our community this opportunity to do better by creating awareness of the continued inequities in our neighborhoods,” said Jan Moran, chairman and president of The Jim Moran Foundation. “With compassion and understanding, we can work together to represent and improve the overall wellbeing of all residents."

The mission of The Jim Moran Foundation is to improve the quality of life for the youth and families of Florida through the support of innovative programs and opportunities that meet the ever-changing needs of the community.

For more information and to download copies of the reports, visit ulbroward.org and hispanicunity.org.

About Urban League of Broward County

The Urban League of Broward County is a not-for-profit organization founded to empower communities and change lives. Our mission is to enable African Americans and others in historically underserved communities secure economic self-reliance, parity, power, and civil rights. Our ADVANCE programs uplift nearly 14,000 people every year through affordable housing initiatives, youth development and diversion, employment and training, entrepreneurship, health, and civic engagement. Learn more about the Urban League of Broward County by visiting www.ulbroward.org or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

About Hispanic Unity of Florida

Hispanic Unity of Florida (HUF) was founded in 1982 by community leaders to guide newcomers to the U.S. on their journey to their American dream and to ease the acculturation process. Today, HUF is Broward County’s largest 501(c) (3) dedicated to the immigrant population. With 12 programs and more than 30 services offered in 4 languages, this agency serves South Florida’s diverse community. Since its inception, HUF has helped 500,000 individuals.

HUF’s comprehensive approach to advance and accelerate the pace of social and economic stability is family-centered, two-generation (2Gen) and operates through a racial equity lens. HUF’s integrated services provide a seamless framework of economic stability that includes immediate assistance as well as long-term solutions. HUF’s mission is to empower immigrants and others to become self-sufficient, productive, and civically engaged.

Contact us at: 954-964-8884 or visit our website at https://www.hispanicunity.org.