September 13, 2017
Detroit Black Young Professionals examine the socio-economic status of African Americans in Detroit, and references employment data from Detroit Future City’s Strategic Framework.
The Buck Stops Here!
Detroit Black Youth Professionals
At approximately 82 percent, the City of Detroit is home to one of the largest populations of African Americans in the United States. While African Americans account for the majority of the City’s population, they have become a dwindling minority in business ownership. This disparity brings to mind this often quoted anecdotal account of dollar circulation in different communities, “The lifespan of a dollar in the Asian community is 28 days, in the Jewish community the lifespan of a dollar is 19 days, and shockingly, the lifespan in the African-American community is approximately 6 hours”. While the validity of these figures remains to be proven this scenario seems to be closer to the truth in Detroit; which begs the question, where does the African American community spend their money? Black Young Professionals of Detroit will explore this topic and more at our “Experienced Entrepreneur Panel” event on September 8, 2017.
For the past decade there have been major developments in the city, such as, the Little Cesar’s Arena, the Q-line, and various commercial and residential developments. While these attractions are sure to bring visitors and new comers to town, the city still lacks basic amenities, like grocery stores. Of the grocers that remain in the city, none are black owned and often times sell low quality products, leading Detroiters to travel to the outskirts of the city into the suburbs to grocery shop, some by car and many by bus. Imagine the inconvenience of grocery shopping miles outside of your city’s limits and having to haul your groceries on to a bus, also, imagine taking that same bus a little bit further to get to work. This is another reality some Detroiters face. According to Detroit Future City: 2012 Detroit Strategic Framework Plan, “…61 percent of employed Detroiters work outside the city, whereas only 39 percent of employed Detroiters work within the city.” Far too many young professionals have to travel beyond their reach to access employment and basic needs. Some of these issues may be the reality of logistics living in the Motorcity or simply a lack of purposeful development.
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