Healthy Communities Matter: The Importance of Place to the Health of Boys of Color

Jun 30, 2010

Summarizes a study of health disparities and trauma among African-American and Latino/Hispanic boys, the underlying social inequality and negative neighborhood conditions, and the need for a healing approach. Outlines case studies of best practices.
  • When it comes to health and other outcomes, the odds for boys and men of color are more than two times worse than they are for white boys and men in California.
  • Negative health outcomes for African-American and Latino boys and young men are a result of growing up in neighborhoods of concentrated disadvantage, places that are more likely to put boys and young men directly in harm’s way and reinforce harmful behavior.
  • Concentrated poverty, community violence, high rates of incarceration, overexposure to unhealthy food, lack of recreation are linked to disruptive individual behavior and psychological conditions that tend to undermine learning and engagement with school.
  • Boys and young men of color suffer from trauma at greater rates than white boys and young men
  • If trauma is the problem, then healing and preventing trauma must be the underlying focus of any solution.
  • Policies that support community-based solutions are needed to address the health issues faced by boys and young men of color.