WSW: Racial Equity is Better for Business

Jun 4, 2015

W.K. Kellogg Foundation - File photo
Credit WMUK

Racial Equality is an issue of fairness and social justice. But a new report also finds that businesses in Michigan have an interest in the issue.

The Business Case for Racial Equity in Michigan was prepared by the Altarum Institute  and funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. The Director of Michigan Programs for the Kellogg Foundation Ali Webb says "it's really common sense." She says if people of color had the same average income as white residents it would increase business activity and corporate profits. 

Webb says there are "structural barriers" that prevent minorities from earning the same as their white counterparts. The report includes a section called the "Race for Results Index." Webb says that includes various measures of success for children . She says the scores for white children are much higher than those of minority children. Webb says improvement is needed for all groups. But she says the high rates of poverty, crime and poor health that tend to be surround minority children prevent them from reaching their true potential.

Business leaders have been advocates on some issues such as high quality pre-school. Webb says that program has proven to be successful, and has shown a sharp increase in high school graduation rates. She says more slots are needed to meet demand. Webb says that's a potential opportunity for business startups.