Highlighting gaps in NJ’s racial equality and how to bridge them

Andrea McChristian of New Jersey Institute for Social Justice says reparations legislation is one way to lessen the gaps

A report from the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice points out how the COVID-19 crisis exposed structural racism in the state’s foundation that has devastated Black and brown communities where residents are getting sick and dying at disproportionate rates. In fact, COVID-19 was the leading cause of death for Black residents in 2020.

Andrea McChristian, the institute’s Law & Policy Director, emphasized the preexisting racial wealth gap in New Jersey now being paired with the way Black and brown communities were affected by the pandemic. “In the short term, communities of color are more likely to be frontline essential workers, more likely to have underlying health conditions, less likely to get the critical health care they need and susceptible to a number of other social determinants of health,” said McChristian.

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