Researching Public Law and Public Policy in the Public Interest

On May 5th, CLiME hosted a national conference on Trauma, Schools and Poverty. A full archive of the conference, including Dr. Margevich's write up and panel contents can be viewed here:

Reduced public funding forces municipal courts to focus on revenue generating fines, resulting in the uneven application of justice. Court fines and jail time in lieu of ability to pay has disparate impact on poor and minority constituents. These practices can have lasting and devastating consequences for individuals, regardless of whether they are ultimately found culpable of any charge. In this paper, Rutgers law student Michael Simone illuminates how this process plays out in New Jersey and beyond.

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While the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule requires cities to assess their housing stock in order to reduce disparities, the Newark Housing Authority follows the national pattern of dismissing racial integration.
Diversion is intended to relieve overburdened courts and crowded jails, and to spare low-risk offenders from the consequences of a criminal record; but in many places, only people with money can afford a second chance.
The wealth discrepancy between blacks and whites is one of the most stark examples of inequality in America. If national median numbers weren’t bad enough, things look much worse in America’s cities, according to a new paper from the Urban Institute.
As a whole, Hispanics are disproportionately concentrated in the lowest-opportunity neighborhoods in U.S. metro areas. However, reflecting this ethnic group's diversity, there is great variation by national origin in their distribution across different levels of neighborhood opportunity. Explore Hispanic diversity in terms of access to neighborhoods of opportunity for two dozen Hispanic-origin subgroups across the 100 largest metro areas with new indicators and visualizations by diversitydatakids.org.
The poor in some cities — big ones like New York and Los Angeles, and also quite a few smaller ones like Birmingham, Ala. — live nearly as long as their middle-class neighbors or have seen rising life expectancy in the 21st century. But in some other parts of the country, adults with the lowest incomes die on average as young as people in much poorer nations like Rwanda, and their life spans are getting shorter.
The rapid growth of the nation’s poor population during the 2000s also coincided with significant shifts in the geography of American poverty. Poverty spread beyond its historic urban and rural locales, rising rapidly in smaller metropolitan areas and making the nation’s suburbs home to the largest and fastest-growing poor population in the country. Yet, even as poverty spread to touch more people and places, it became more concentrated in distressed and disadvantaged areas.
The Distressed Communities Index (DCI) is a customized dataset created by EIG examining economic distress throughout the country and made up of interactive maps, infographics, and a report. It captures data from more than 25,000 zip codes (those with populations over 500 people). In all, it covers 99 percent of Americans.
In this post we explore the degree of income inequality seen in New Jersey’s municipalities using the same process as in our previous analysis where we explored the Gini Index and 80/20 Household Income Ratio of US counties.

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