DES MOINES, Iowa– Today, The Director’s Council will unveil a blueprint presentation through their initiative, One Economy, that will address the racial wealth divide in Polk County.
This event will not only provide research on the economic inequities that African Americans face in Polk County, but it’s also a call to action. Attendees will take part in learning and contributing to corporate and community solutions to these problems.
“This is an opportunity to experience, to learn and to walk away with some tangible things that you can actually implement in your respective organizations,” Volunteer, Deidre DeJear said.
During this event participants will break out into sessions covering five different subjects, impacting and impacted by the racial wealth gap in Polk County. Those include, employment, financial inclusion, housing, education and health.
According to the Polk County Housing Trust Fund nearly 70% of African Americans in the county rent their homes compared to 30% of the general population.
The Iowa Data Center states that the median household income is $33,000 for African Americans in the Des Moines area, while their counterparts in Polk County make $30,000 more every year.
DeJear said although some of this information isn’t necessarily new, the goal of this event is to draw attention to the fact that these statistics have become stagnant over the years. The Director’s Council wishes to bring new solutions to the table to tackle these economic issues.
“It’s important that we rebuild intentionally, that we are not simply using the same blueprint that we used before. But we are bringing folks to the table that can make our blueprint even more magnificent which will then in turn lead to success for more people and sustainability for more people,” DeJear said.
The Director’s Council will be providing anecdotal, qualitative and quantitative data to give attendees a full picture of the disadvantages seen in the Polk County among African Americans.
DeJear believes this information will be hard for some to digest, but the conversation will push the needle forward on making actual change in the community.
“Through that self discovery, taking the bull by its horns, not shying away from it because we live in a society where we feel a little bit uncomfortable sometimes confronting challenges,” DeJear said. “But it is only though confronting challenges that we will get over it.”
This event will be held t 1pm today. For more information visit this link.