ERIC Number: ED480200
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2002
Racial and Ethnic Inequality in Childhood Exposure to Neighborhood Poverty and Affluence.
Timberlake, Jeffrey, M.
Despite recent scholarly concern with "neighborhood effects" on children, no study to date has measured the cumulative exposure of children to poor and affluent neighborhoods. This study constructed multi-state life tables to estimate racial and ethnic differences in "childhood expectancy" in five neighborhood types, ranging from affluent to extreme poverty. At early 1990 rates, black children could expect to spend over 60 percent of their first 18 years in neighborhoods with poverty rates in excess of 20 percent. The corresponding figures for white and Hispanic children were about 14 and 36 percent, respectively. Given the fact that most black children do not reside in poor families, it is evident that a large proportion of the child-years spent in poor neighborhoods are spent by non-poor black children. White children could expect to live nearly five times longer than black children and 12 times longer than Hispanic children in neighborhoods with poverty rates of less than 3 percent. Results found less white/black inequality once neighborhood status at birth was taken into account, suggesting that racial differences in childhood exposure to neighborhood conditions were due primarily to differences in the probability of being born into a poor neighborhood. Recommends further research on the effects of different doses of exposure to neighborhood poverty and affluence. (Author/SM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Child Health and Human Development (NIH), Bethesda, MD.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Additional support from Chicago University, Population Research Center. An earlier version of this paper was presented at the Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America (Atlanta, GA, May 9-11, 2002).