California has become the first in the nation to require state agencies to include a separate category for descendants of enslaved people in its collection of employee data.
Why it matters: Advocates say the data disaggregation will help identify and address long-held inequities within Black communities. Many descendants see it as a model for other states — and the federal government — to follow.
How it happened: Descendants of enslaved people have said for years that disaggregating data to specify a category for descendants would benefit the community and enable more targeted services.
No one is denying that Black people at large are marginalized in America, said Chris Lodgson, lead organizer of the Coalition for a Just and Equitable California. But the kind of historical oppression he faces as a descendant has different consequences than the inequities more recent immigrants face, he added.
found that in Los Angeles, the median net worth for a Black descendant of enslaved people is $4,000 compared to $72,000 for a recent immigrant from the African continent.
Advocates say the data disaggregation will help identify and address long-held inequities within Black communities.