Closing the Racial Wealth Gap Initiative

Who We Are:

The Insight Center's Closing the Racial Wealth Gap Initiative is a national effort to address the wealth gap that leaves the average American family of color with only 16 cents for every dollar owned by the average white family. To close this gap in the next generation, we have brought together over 180 scholars, advocates, and practitioners of color to inform the national economic debate with diverse perspectives and provide policy solutions to create a more inclusive and equitable future for all Americans.

Why This Matters:

Unleashing the potential that exists in all our communities to generate economic growth is essential to ensure a globally competitive economy, but it depends on our nation's commitment to eliminating inequities and providing opportunities for all families to build their wealth (assets minus debts). Without wealth, families and communities cannot become and remain economically secure. Public policies have and continue to play a major role in creating and sustaining the racial wealth gap, and they must play a role in closing it.

What We Want to Accomplish:

To ensure that public policies address racial economic disparities and create economic opportunity for all, regardless of race and ethnicity, and to reframe the public policy debate to recognize the importance of wealth building and the racial dimension of the wealth gap. To that end, the Initiative has developed a set of policy principles, fact sheets and a white paper "Laying the Foundation for National Prosperity: The Imperative of Closing the Racial Wealth Gap," that serve as a framework for developing and implementing policies that will close the racial wealth gap and that include people of color as full and equal participants in the economy.

How We Work:

Through the Initiative's Experts of Color Network (ECON), a network of over 180 of the nation's leading American Indian, Asian, African-American, Latino(a), and Native Hawaiian experts in the asset-building field, we are educating policymakers about the racial wealth gap, providing the media with experts who can speak on issues that are most relevant to today's economy, and developing solutions to close the racial wealth gap. These scholars, policy specialists, advocates and community leaders have given Congressional briefings, and provided testimony on issues like housing, jobs, savings and investment, debt, credit, social insurance and business development. Through strategic communications, they are actively framing economic issues with a racial lens and building public will for inclusive policies. Already, the work of the Initiative and members of the Experts of Color Network have been featured in several national media outlets including The Washington Post, CNN's Anderson Cooper 360, Reuters, The Huffington Post and NPR.

What We Can Do:

We have a portfolio of services and programs that foster the development of equitable asset building policies that can help close the racial wealth gap, increase the economic security of low-income people, and help women and minority owned businesses thrive. Our approach includes increasing the impact of experts of color in the media and public policy arena, improving community and family savings strategies, and developing and promoting models to grow diverse small businesses.Our staff can:

  • Analyze the racial impact of public policy
  • Develop and give presentations and workshops on the racial wealth gap and how to close it
  • Develop community and family savings and asset-building strategies
  • Design small-business and micro-enterprise development policy and programs
  • Research and develop sector-based strategies for small business development, including minority and women owned business

About Our Staff:

Anne Price, Director.
Gabriela Sandoval, Director, Policy and Research.
 

Contact Us

To learn more about our work or to contact an expert of color, please email Anne Price or call 510.251.2600.