Publicly available data in Maine paints a picture of economic, health, education, and criminal justice systems that work better for whites than for people of color in our state. These disparities mirror those at the national level.
A new fact sheet by MECEP Policy Analyst James Myall details how systemic barriers to success for people of color are evident in data regarding wages, poverty rates, school suspension and Advance Placement enrollment, access to affordable health care, and incarceration rates.
Federal, state and local policies throughout our history have created relative privilege for white Mainers while making it harder for indigenous communities, Black families, and other Mainers of color to thrive. We can create an economy in which communities of color have an equal chance to get ahead, but only if we examine the unique, discriminatory hurdles they face because of unjust policies.
The fact sheet divides data on racial disparities into four categories: economic security, education, health access, and criminal justice. The fact sheet aims to serve as a central reference for research, analysis, and policymaking about how best to reduce or eliminate those barriers so that all Mainers can prosper and fulfil their potential.