The 2015 Equality Index of Black America stands at 72.2 percent compared to a revised 2014 index of 71.5 percent. The largest increases in this year’s index were in the areas of social justice (from 56.9% to 60.6%) and health (from 78.2% to 79.8%) with only a small increase in economics (from 55.4% to 55.8%). The education (from 76.7% to 76.1%) and civic engagement (from 104.7% to 104%) indexes both declined slightly.
The increase in the social justice index was the result of fewer Blacks being victims of violent crimes and fewer Black high school students carrying weapons, while at the same time, the rates for white high school students increased. The increase in the health index resulted from increased health care coverage for Blacks since the Affordable Care Act went into effect and a decline in binge drinking among Blacks, while the rates for whites continued to climb.
The small increase in the economics index was the result of improvements in the income, poverty and home loan denial gaps. The unemployment and homeownership gaps widened.