New Study Finds Housing Costs are Intensifying Racial Disparities in the Bay Area

A new study from UC Berkeley’s Urban Displacement Project and the California Housing Partnership shows that movements caused by housing costs are intensifying racial disparities among the Bay Area’s neighborhoods. This research, which tracks migratory patterns and demographic changes across the region between 2000 and 2015, finds that many neighborhoods in Berkeley, Oakland and San Francisco saw declines in their African American populations, while farther-out areas of the East Bay and beyond experienced increases. Movements caused by increasing housing costs are intensifying racial disparities among neighborhoods, with a 30 percent increase in median rent in a given neighborhood corresponding with a more than 20 percent decrease in the number of low-income African Americans, Latinos and Asians. The study also found no significant relationship between rent increases and losses of low-income white households, suggesting that access to areas of opportunity often comes down to race rather than class.

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