New report shows racial disparities in Charleston County

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The College of Charleston's Race and Social Justice Initiative published a new report on Monday that analyzes racial disparities between black and white Charleston County residents.

Work on the report began after the Mother Emanuel church shooting two years ago.

The College of Charleston held a special event to announce the results.

"Black people are overwhelmingly negatively impacted by factors in education, housing, employment," Executive Director of the Avery Research Center Patricia Williams Lessane said.

The report aimed to analyze racial disparities in Charleston County's black and white residents.

The report focused on the years 2000 to 2015.

"A half a century ago, we have a city that had this double-digit gap between blacks and whites in terms of employment, in terms of income, and here it is a half century later and the numbers remain," said Stacey Patton, author of the report.

Employment isn't the only issue the report found.

The study shows black people in Charleston County earn 60% of what white people make.

Another huge issue outlined by the report is that more than 75% of traffic stops that didn't end in a citation or arrest involve African Americans.

Looking forward, the people behind the report hope the county makes actual change based on the results they collected.

"There are actual benchmarks that we can look at over the next couple of years to see if the county agencies, if the city agencies, if the school district are actually heeding what this report reflects," Williams Lessane said.

The report encourages County leaders to do several things.

It recommends they preserve existing affordable housing and to increase de-escalation training for law enforcement officers.

Overall, the report aims for a more inclusive and equitable county, according to a spokesperson from the College of Charleston.

Copyright 2017 WCSC. All rights reserved.