From Civil Rights to Silver Rights
In 2012, there were more people in the United States today without a bank account -- 17 millions to be exact -- than there were without the right to vote in the early 60's. Think about that for a minute. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s final action and unfinished dream was launching a Poor People’s Campaign that attacked unfair housing practices and sought to root out economic injustice and disparity for the under-served. Now here we are some 40+ years later and we still struggle with tragic statistics like these pulled from a recent study conducted by the FDIC.
The proportion of U.S. households that are unbanked varies considerably among different racial and ethnic groups, with certain racial and ethnic minorities more likely to be unbanked than the population as a whole. Minorities more likely to be unbanked include blacks (an estimated 21.7 percent of black households are unbanked), Hispanics (19.3 percent), and American Indian/Alaskans (15.6 percent). Racial groups less likely to be unbanked are Asians (3.5 percent) and whites (3.3 percent).
Bottom line -- without basic access to mainstream financial services and a fundamental understanding of the language of money, when nearly 20% of Latinos and nearly 22% of Black households remain unbanked, we usher in a new form of social injustice and disparity, an age of what should be considered economic slavery.
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