Racism to Blame for Deplorable African-American Infant Mortality Rates, Group Says

Articles | November 14 2019


CLEVELAND, Ohio — In three years, First Year Cleveland has dramatically reduced the Cuyahoga County infant mortality rate – dropping deaths by 18 percent. But African-American babies are four times as likely as white babies to die in their first year of life.

The rate is one of the worst in the country. And it’s largely due to structural racism, says First Year Cleveland, a partnership of Cleveland, Cuyahoga County and Case Western Reserve University.

Because of institutional practices and inherent biases, black women face daily stressors white women never experience. They are judged in everyday interactions, and at doctor’s visits, their concerns are downplayed.

That’s the result of 400 years of racism, says Margaret Mitchell, CEO and president of the Greater Cleveland YWCA said during a meeting with cleveland.com reporters and editors. (Read more)