⚠ Trigger Warning: systemic racism, missed reparations for enslaved people.
We celebrate Juneteenth each year to mark the end of slavery in the United States. On June 19, 1865, the order to release all enslaved people under the Emancipation Proclamation finally reached Galveston, Texas, freeing 250,000 Black people, who were some of the last to be freed.
The order was issued two years earlier, and meant freedom for an estimated 6-7 million people enslaved at that time.
Abolishing slavery meant the beginning of a new life for the enslaved, but the impact on Black wealth in America remains today.
For every $1 of wealth owned by white households, Black households own 25 cents. The compounding effect of wealth means that white Americans are 28 times more likely to become millionaires than Black Americans.
More stats are available in The State of U.S. Wealth Inequality by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
To date, no reparations have been made for the lost economic costs attributed to slavery, which total $15-16 trillion.
To add to missed economic opportunity, systemic racism impacts wealth-building and wealth-sustaining activities for Black Americans, including discrimination in hiring, pay, and financial services.
Call to Action: We encourage anyone in a position of power to look closely at what is happening at their company, organization, or community, to see how systemic racism may be impacting their Black members and employees, and what changes can be made to reach equality.
While the U.S. government decides if financial reparations will be made to the ancestors of enslaved people, organizational leaders don't have to wait to start making their own reparations.
If you’re in a position of power, do this:
Here are steps individuals can make to support the increase of Black wealth in America:
We built Bolder to address the wealth gaps that exist across multiple communities in America. We're dedicated to providing compassionate, personalized, and affordable financial guidance to help underserved Americans build wealth.
While we celebrate Juneteenth today, we won't forget the work left to be done. We promise to take the steps above, as an organization, and as individuals fighting for economic equality.
Thanks for reading,
Amy and Sid
Co-Founders, Bolder Money