The financial cost of racial discrimination in America is real. Systemic and institutionalized racism has contributed to a disparaging wealth gap amongst the African-American community. On October 17, 2018, the Harlem Business Alliance will host the Black Economic Empowerment Breakfast at MIST Harlem. The forum, which will be led by financial literacy expert and author of The Black Tax: The Cost of Being Black in America Shawn D. Rochester will explore the obstacles that African-Americans have faced in accumulating wealth and the appropriate economic response from personal, policy and business standpoints.
“When it comes to accumulating wealth in America, there has never been a level playing field for the Black Community. We are calling on community leaders, influencers and entrepreneurs to rally their base, and join the Harlem Business Alliance (www.hbany.org), at the upcoming Black Economic Empowerment Breakfast. Our guest speaker is noted author, and financial literacy expert, Shawn D. Rochester,” says Regina Smith, Executive Director.
The racial wealth gap is one of the most pressing issues faced by our country today. Research shows:
* For every $100 in white family wealth, Black families hold just $5.04.
* More than one in four Black households have zero or negative net worth, compared to less than one in ten white families without wealth.
* Black applicants were rejected at more than double the rate of white applicants on all types of loans, including conventional mortgage.
The Harlem Business Alliance has been on the front line, advocating for Harlem, and the Black community at-large as it relates to education, equity, programming, entrepreneurship, preservation of culture, technology, and groundbreaking signature events including opportunities in cannabis and now, the Black Economic Empowerment Breakfast.
“We are missing 6 million jobs, 1.4 million businesses with staff and over $8 trillion of net worth in the Black Community. The Black Tax provides that understanding in a powerful and paradigm shifting, data-driven way and lays out an economic framework that we can use to address these massive gaps,” said Rochester. “We have spent far too much time focusing almost exclusively on civil and social issues, it is time to focus on economic advancement, business development and employment in our community specifically.”
According to Smith, “The systemic and institutionalized racism stemming from centuries of slavery and the Jim Crow era continues to have a devastating impact on our community.” Forums like the Black Economic Empowerment Breakfast are needed so that we can be reminded about how we arrived in this condition and the urgent need to develop solutions to reverse this alarming trend.
The time is now. The Black Economic Empowerment Breakfast will provide information, create dialogue and unlock opportunities for all. Scheduled for Wednesday, October 17, 8:30-10:00 AM, Mist Harlem (46 West 116th Street).
Tickets can be purchased here:
Social media hashtag to follow the breakfast conversation: #theblacktaxed