Press Release

New NAACP Report Highlights Ways Forward from Poverty in the Twin Cities

December 4, 2019

ST. PAUL, MN (December 7, 2019) – In a new report, the NAACP analyzes the economic conditions of African Americans in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota. It examines the impact of historical racism and residential segregation in the Twin Cities and provides recommendations for eliminating the entrenched poverty. Based upon the research presented, it is clear that the combination of racial disparities in education, poverty and unemployment, median household income, and homeownership rates within the Twin Cities have had devastating repercussions for Black residents of the area.

On Saturday, December 7, 2019 at 10:15 am, the Minnesota/Dakotas NAACP will host a press conference at the Golden Thyme Restaurant and Café, 934 Shelby Avenue, St. Paul, MN, in which the civil rights organization will announce details and findings from its Twin Cities Economic Inclusion Plan (EIP) for Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota.

Participants include:

  • W.C. Jordan, NAACP President Minnesota/Dakotas Area State Conference
  • Marvin Owens, Jr. National NAACP Deputy Chief Development Officer
  • Leslie Redmond, President of the Minneapolis NAACP
  • Farhio Khalif, President of the St. Paul NAACP

For an embargoed copy of the report, click here.

“Minneapolis has long been riddled with economic inequality and civil unrest,” said NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson. “From employment to criminal justice, the city’s racial disparities are among the worst in the nation. With our Twin Cities Economic Inclusion Plan, we’re providing federal, state and local government officials concrete recommendations on how to resolve issues pertaining to housing, jobs and education in these Black communities.”

The Twin Cities EIP will be a resource for elected officials, community residents and stakeholders to alleviate systematic, government-sanctioned racial discrimination with beneficial economic policy and programmatic solutions.

“This Economic Inclusion Plan provides in-depth research on the current economic conditions and the policies that foster these conditions, and then makes recommended policy changes necessary in the twin cities,” said Lisa Bland Malone, NAACP Economic Programs Manager. “We are grateful for the leadership of our local branches and state conference who contributed to this important work, and we are faithful in the fight for economic justice.”

The Twin Cities report found that the Black poverty rate is five times higher than the white poverty rate for residents of the Twin Cities. The disparity in child poverty is even greater: within the Twin Cities, African-American children are 8.5 times higher than the rate for the cities young white residents at 3.9 percent. The Black unemployment rate within the Twin Cities averaged 7.8 percent in 2017, more than 2.5 times higher than the rate for white residents.

The report makes extensive policy prescriptions for improving the economic wellbeing of African Americans in the Twin Cities and advancing an agenda that promotes affordable housing, combats homelessness, addresses barriers to quality education, and opposes all legislation that supports racial discrimination and perpetuates poverty.

The NAACP’s release of this EIP is part of the NAACP’s ongoing commitment to understanding the challenges facing communities of color and providing actionable support for their growth.



Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest nonpartisan civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities. You can read more about the NAACP’s work and our six “Game Changer” issue areas by visiting