Monday, January 12, 2009

A report on Jacksonville's children

A new report on ethnic and racial disparities in Jacksonville, Florida has been labeled "depressing". That was the reaction of former Senator Betty Holzendorf to the new city government report. When the document was unveiled today, the city commission also presented the first such report in 1947, and not much has changed since then.

Lindy Thackston of First Coast News gives us the details on the urban core of Jacksonville. The full document can be downloaded here.

Zone 1 - an area known as the Urban Core, which includes zip codes 32202, 32204, 32206, 32208, 32209. and 32254 - is overwhelmingly the most at risk.

Zone 1 has the greatest concentration of African-American citizens, and the Jacksonville Children's Commission says it is consistently the bull's-eye target area, representing the neediest children and families.

Holzendorf says, "Tou cannot raise children in a community where the community is going to hell in a basket."

Zone 1 consistently leads Duval County in homicides, but it is also number one in little or no prenatal care, child poverty, low birth weight babies, child deaths, teen pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, single parent households, and high school dropouts.

Nine percent of people 15 to 24 years old in Zone 1 admit to having an STD.

The infant mortality rate in Zone 1 is a shocking 137 percent higher than the rate of the entire city.

Nearly 40 percent of children in Zone 1 are living in poverty.

"We've been talking about Zone 1 since 1947," said Holzendorf. "For the last 61 years, why haven't we put the resources in that hub so that it no longer exists?"

1 comment:

Tina Fortune said...

I am so glad you have this blog! I've been working for the past year to get my organization Single Parent Assistance, Resources & Knowledge, Inc. in the community to provide information to single parents. I Change is on the way!