A sobering new report finds Black people are being disproportionately harmed by the coronavirus because of structural institutions which existed before the pandemic hit.
A report by Howard University School of Law’s Thurgood Marshall Center, Harvard Law scholars and Law 4 Black Lives DC details the disparities in health, policing, economics, mass incarceration and domestic violence.
“We are losing our jobs at a higher rate; we know that Black-owned businesses are closing at a higher rate,” said Justin Hansford, director of the Thurgood Marshal Civil Rights Center.
Hansford and other drafters of the report are calling on Congress to concentrate more funding and relief to the black communities since they’ve been hardest hit by the pandemic.
“There should be color conscious response to the pandemic acknowledging that the structural inequalities that currently exist have created a situation where Black people are being disproportionately harmed,” Hansford said.
The report says systemic racism has led to white families having about 10 times more wealth than Blacks, making it harder for them to absorb an economic shock.
It says fewer Black, non-violent offenders are being released from prisons to home confinement because of COVID-19 compared to white inmates.
“We are being disproportionately put in positions where we are being made to bear the brunt of the pain in this virus,” Hansford said.