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"The State of Blacks in New Mexico: The Demographic Profile and Economic Well-Being of the Black Community as Reflected by the 'Data Hub'"

Dr. Gabriel R. Sanchez, Dr. Kathy Powers, Brooke Abrams

Cover of "The State of Blacks in New Mexico: The Demographic Profile and Economic Well-Being of the Black Community as Reflected by the 'Data Hub'"

Research focused on racial and ethnic inequalities in New Mexico is generally contextualized differently from similar work with a national focus due to the unique demographic profile of the state. New Mexico was the first state in the nation to reach majority-minority status, this standing is driven by the large Hispanic or Latino population (47%) coupled with its Native American community (which constitutes 10.2% percent of the state’s population). The African American community in New Mexico represents a more modest 3.1% of the state’s overall population when calculated as single or mixed race, only 2.3% if narrowing to single-race. As the figure below illustrates, this is significantly lower than the national average of 12.7% (13.9% if mixed race is included), and lower than other states in our region. Therefore, unlike the rest of the nation where racial inequalities are largely discussed within a Black-White paradigm, here in New Mexico the dominant narrative centers on a Brown-White paradigm.

This can lead to less focus on the African American community, a community that faces many disparities in important outcomes. The recent release of the Data Hub provides the ideal data to address this limitation. The New Mexico Office of African American Affairs (OAAA) recognizes that data analytics is integral to the process of improving the economic conditions and empowerment of the African American community. The OAAA therefore collaborates with researchers who can help collect, interpret and improve our ability to visualize the data available for analysis of Blacks in New Mexico. The Data Hub represents a key collaboration with UNM, as the Center for Education Policy Research (CEPR) helped build the Data Hub webpage and underlying data visualization, and the RWJF Center for Health Policy will assist in the creation of several policy briefs utilizing the data.

Sanchez, Gabriel R., Kathy Powers, and Brooke Abrams. "The State of Blacks in New Mexico: The Demographic Profile and Economic Well-Being of the Black Community as Reflected by the 'Data Hub'.” Albuquerque, NM: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Center for Health Policy. 

Available here