Saturday, 26 August 2017

Narrative images: Buying a house on Long Island

"An African American and a white girl study a sign in the integrated Long Island community of Lakeview, New York, on April 1962." (via)
Negroes! This Community could become another ghetto. You owe it to your family to buy in another community 

Erase (2012). Housing and Neighbourhood Preferences of African Americans on Long Island. 2012 Survey Research Report.
Here are some excerpts from the 2012 research report:

Long Island is one of the most racially segregated regions in the country. For the past ten years, ERASE Racism has documented how housing discrimination plays a significant role in determining the neighborhoods where African Americans on Long Island will most likely reside. We have reported that, as a direct result of patterns of housing segregation, only 9% of Long Island’s black students have access to high performing schools as compared to 30% of white students. Studies have also shown that even the most affluent black and Hispanic homeowners are segregated into majority black and Hispanic communities with high concentrations of poverty. These factors point to structural impediments for blacks to housing choice and to quality education. Nonetheless, studies about neighborhood preferences often pose the question about whether so-called “self-segregation” is at play by all racial groups, including blacks, rather than structural racism."

Despite the popular notion that blacks only want to live in communities with neighbors who share their own race or ethnicity, the telephone survey findings showed that given the choice, nearly all respondents chose a racially mixed neighborhood, with a large majority, 69%, who chose an even mix of 50% white and 50% black. Only 1% of respondents said that they would like to live in a neighborhood that is all black.

Long Island continues to be one of the most racially segregated regions in the nation; in 1980 the Dissimilarity Index for blacks in relation to whites was 76.9, with 100 representing total segregation. Thirty years later, in 2010, the black-white level of segregation was 69.2, still very high and indicating just a slight decrease (dropping barely 1 percentage point every five years). While Long Island also tends to be segregated by income, income disparities cannot explain the very high level of segregation experienced by blacks in the region.

African Americans perceive housing discrimination as pervasive on Long Island. One in three, 33%, of black Long Islanders surveyed reported having experienced housing discrimination first-hand or within their immediate family. Our previous housing reports, reports by others and various law suits have documented the ongoing problem of fair housing violations, including racial steering by real estate agents, predatory lending by banks, and discriminatory municipal policies. Housing discrimination promotes and preserves residential and school segregation.

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photograph via


  1. Shocking pic, it surely is.

    1. It really is. Unfortunately - according to the report - the situation does not seem to have changed that much. Racism is just more subtle today than it was in the 1960s.
      Many thanks for sharing your thoughts, Wim!

  2. Great read, thanks.

    1. Glad to hear you found the report interesting. Many thanks, Kenneth!