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Social And Economic Equality in the USA

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Presentation on theme: "Social And Economic Equality in the USA"— Presentation transcript:

1 Social And Economic Equality in the USA

2 Aims: Examine the reasons why many Americans are facing inequalities and have not achieved the American Dream.

3 The American Dream In groups make up a list of famous
Americans who you think have achieved the American dream!!

4 American Dream or Nightmare?
Millions of American cannot afford to go to the doctor Millions of Americans do not finish school Millions of Americans are unemployed Many Americans are living in slum housing Thousands of Americans are murdered each year

5 The American Reality Many Americans have not achieved the
American Dream and face social and economic inequalities. This affects people from all ethnic groups BUT ethnic minorities are more likely to face inequality.

6 Crime in the USA Aims: Justice is not equal for everyone in the USA
African Americans are more likely to be involved in crime and be victims of crime

7 Crime in the USA USA is known for its high crime rates particularly its high murder rate and crimes involving guns. In the past 10 years crime rates have dropped in the USA. This is due to a big increase in the number of police on the streets and much harsher sentences for criminals. BUT the USA is still a more violent society than the UK.

8 Crime in the USA 12 children are killed each day by gunfire.
The murder rate: USA 55 per million people per year UK 4.5 per million people per year Concern about the number of high school/college shootings e.g. Virginia Tech shooting in 2007 where 32 people were killed. Number of inmates in US prisons has increased dramatically.

9 Ghetto Areas Crime rates are particularly high in the cities
(urban areas). A ghetto is a run-down area in a city. Ghettos have high rates of poverty, unemployment and crime. Over 60% of African Americans live in inner city areas. This helps to explain why they are more likely to be affected by crime.

10 Read page 96 in your USA textbook and answer the
questions which follow: 1. Explain why the cost of hiring a lawyer prevents some Americans from having equal access to justice. 2. What evidence is there that blacks are not treated equally by the legal system. 3. Which state has the highest number of executions? Give evidence to support your answer. 4. ‘The death penalty is less likely to be used if the homicide (murder) victim is from an ethnic minority group’ Using Figure 4.12 what evidence is there to support this view. 5. Using the evidence on page 98 what evidence is there that blacks are more likely to be: a) involved in crime b) victims of crime.

11 Health Care in the USA Aims:
To identify how Americans pay for healthcare. Examine the reasons why some Americans face inequalities in health.

12 Group Task: As a group write down examples of times
that you have used health care in the UK: E.g. In hospital to have appendix out

Medicare – over 65s Medicaid – poor Problems: Not all treatments are covered. Some doctors/hospitals refuse to treat you PRIVATE INSURANCE You pay OR Employer pays Problems: Expensive. People are underinsured – not covered for every type of treatment

14 The Cost of Health Insurance
In the USA it costs the average family $9,100 a year for health insurance. This is roughly £6,000 pounds!! Could your family afford this?

15 Healthcare in the USA 58% of the US population are covered by some level of private insurance. 15% have no insurance cover. 27% depended on government programmes. 11% of children in the USA are without health insurance.

16 Consequences of Being Uninsured
Lack of routine care which detects and cures health problems before they become serious. Only getting medical help when a condition is serious. Twice as likely as an insured patient to be at risk of dying when you get to hospital. Less access to high cost technology which can provide treatments which might help to save your life.

17 Doctors are paid high salaries
People live longer Doctors are paid high salaries Rising Cost of Health Insurance Doctors take out expensive insurance policies in case a patient sues them New treatments are more expensive

18 Healthcare in the USA Read page 99 and answer the following questions:
Briefly outline the US healthcare system – mention private insurance, Medicare and Medicaid. Do all Americans have equality in healthcare? Provide at least two pieces of evidence to support your answer. ‘Ethnic minorities are more likely to be uninsured compared to white Americans’ Using Table 4.12 what evidence is there to support this statement. What are the consequences of being uninsured? What are the main disadvantages of the Medicare and Medicaid scheme?

19 Inequalities in Health
Due to the different health care system in the USA there are huge inequalities between ethnic groups. African Americans and Hispanics are more likely to have: No health insurance Lower life expectancy Higher infant mortality rates Higher rates of low birth rates among babies

20 Education in the USA Aims:
Schools in inner city areas (ghettos) have a poorer standard of education. White Americans achieve more success in education than ethnic minorities.

21 Success Lack of Success Employment Unemployment Good Income Low Income
Education Success Lack of Success Employment Unemployment Good Income Low Income Success in education will affect the overall quality of a person’s life.

22 Types of Schools Inner City Schools: Wealthy Suburbs: * Poor buildings
* Teacher shortage * Less access to computers/equipment *Armed police officers on site * Higher drop-out rates Wealthy Suburbs: *State of the art buildings *Specialised teachers *Sophisticated equipment *Little or no drop-out rate *High achievement in national tests.

23 Inequalities in Education
% of High School Graduates Unemployed: Whites 7% Blacks 15% Hispanics 33% Even when whites/blacks achieve success in the same areas of work, whites earn more than blacks.

24 Employment and Unemployment
Aims: Identify the effects of unemployment Identify the main inequalities in employment and unemployment

25 Poverty Crime Unemployment Poor Housing Poor Education Poor Health

26 Employment and Unemployment
Other Points: Income levels of ethnic minorities are lower e.g. Blacks on average earns two-thirds of what a White American earns. Even when Blacks and Whites have equal qualifications, Black earnings are lower. There is discrimination in the workplace against ethnic minorities when it comes to hiring and promoting staff.

27 Poverty Aims: Identify the causes of poverty
Identify the main inequalities in poverty Understand how a ‘circle of deprivation’ affects many Americans.

28 Causes of Poverty Poor Education Unemployment Single parent families
Discrimination Welfare Cutbacks

29 Circle of Deprivation Many Americans find themselves trapped
in a circle of deprivation – children grow up facing the same social and economic inequalities as their parents with little chance of achieving the American Dream. Living in inner cities of US cities are the ‘underclass’ – people facing extreme poverty and more likely to be out of work, living on welfare benefits and involved in crime.

30 Housing in the USA Aims:
Identify the inequalities in housing in the USA.

31 Housing in USA Ethnic minorities are more likely to live in the inner cities in poor housing. Just under half of all Blacks and Hispanics own their homes compared to whites. Blacks/Hispanics find it more difficult to get a mortgage – they have lower incomes than most other groups. Banks often discriminate against people with a ghetto zipcode (postcode). They believe they will have difficult getting loans repaid.

32 Segregation in Housing
During the past 40 years Whites have left the inner cities for a better quality of life in the suburbs and to escape the growing population of Blacks and Hispanics. This has led to segregation in the inner cities with certain areas dominated by Blacks or Hispanics. Some of the most segregated cities are New York, Chicago and Philadelphia. There is even segregation in the wealthier suburbs. Many white communities have tried to control the buying and selling of local homes. Studies have shown when the ethnic minority population in an area exceeds 8%, whites move out. This is known as ‘white flight’.

33 Types of Housing Inner City Ghetto Inner City Apartments
Middle Class Suburbs High Class Suburbs

34 Family Life In the USA divorce rates are rising and the number of single parent families is increasing. 30% of blacks are middle class and have a traditional family structure – two parents and two children. In the ghetto, over 80% of families are headed by a single parent and only 11% are headed by two parents. In total only 36% of black children live with both parents. Single parents are more likely to be unemployed and living on welfare. Their children are less likely to do well at school, more likely to be involved in crime and lack positive male role models in their life. Family life is very important in the Hispanic community – 64% of children grow up in a two-parent family

35 What Causes Social and Economic Inequality?
Aims: Identify the main causes of social and economic inequality in the USA. Examine the evidence that ethnic minorities have made social and economic progress.

36 Causes of Inequality Unemployment: higher levels of unemployment among ethnic minorities. Education: less ethnic minorities finish high school and/or college. Discrimination: particularly against ethnic minorities in the workforce. Family Structure: higher numbers of single parent families among ethnic minorities increases the chances of poverty. Welfare Cutbacks: Ethnic minorities are more likely to rely on benefits.

37 Causes of Inequality Affirmative Action Programmes: these have been cut back by the government and challenged by courts. Lack of Political Participation and Representation: ethnic minorities are less likely to vote, so political parties do not ‘chase’ their votes as much as the white vote. Cost: tackling inequalities cost money and political parties are reluctant to raise taxes. White Flight/Circle of Deprivation: increase poverty in US cities.

38 Economic and Social Progress
Poverty levels for ethnic minorities have dropped compared to the 1950s. More ethnic minorities are finishing high school, going to college and getting into professional well-paid jobs. Income levels have improved – a greater % of Blacks are classed as ‘middle class’. Home ownership levels have also risen.

39 Economic and Social Progress
Despite the progress that has been made ethnic minorities are still more likely to face economic and social inequality and less likely to achieve the American Dream.

40 Affirmative Action Aims:
Examine the importance of the Civil Rights Movement. Define Affirmative Action Identify examples of Affirmative Action Programmes (AAPs)

41 The Civil Rights Movement
In the past ethnic minorities were treated as second-class citizens in the USA and did not have equal rights with whites. In the 1950s/1960s the Civil Rights Movements campaigned for Blacks (and all other minorities) to have equal rights. One of the most famous civil rights leaders was Martin Luther King. Changes in the law were introduced in the 1960s to ensure that all Americans had equality.

42 Affirmative Action In the 1970s Affirmative Action Programmes were introduced by the federal government. The aim was to help ethnic minorities overcome past discrimination. Affirmative Action means ‘positive discrimination’ in favour of a particular group.

43 Affirmative Action Programmes
Schools – ‘busing’ was introduced to transport children around towns to try and achieve a racial balance in schools. Universities – preference was given to ethnic minority candidates applying for university. Employment – companies which had contracts with the federal/state government had to ensure that their workforce reflected the different ethnic groups in the US population and that there was no discrimination in hiring/promotion of workers.

44 The Future of Affirmative Action
Across the USA there has been huge opposition to Affirmative Action Programmes. In California in 1996, voters passed Proposition 209 which abolished AAPs in public employment, education and contracts. A number of states have followed suit and ended AAPs. The University of California stopped using race to decide student admissions – the number of Blacks, Hispanic and White students who were awarded spaces dropped but admissions for Asian students increased.

45 The Future of Affirmative Action
In 2003, the University of Michigan was challenged in court regarding its admissions policy – ethnic minorities were given extra points when applications were being assessed. This legal challenge was supported by President Bush. The Supreme Court ruled the university could take race into account when admitting students but they could not award them extra points. Therefore many people feel that the situation regarding AAPs is very confusing.

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