The Economic Progress Institute of Rhode Island (EPI) recently released a report that looks at opportunities and challenges for Rhode Island’s black community, The State of Black Families in Rhode Island:  Left Behind But Making Strides, which provides details about key economic and social indicators for Black families in the Ocean State and documents the disparities with their White counterparts.

The report addresses the multitude of socio-economic indicators that have resulted from centuries of unequal treatment, and recognizes that new immigrants to Rhode Island from Liberia, Nigeria, other African nations and the Caribbean may have different experiences than native born African Americans, yet still be subject to the similar prejudices and barriers that have held back the native born population.

SOBFRI InfographicThis report highlights these continued disparities, laying the foundation for a concerted public policy response to redress historical wrongs through proactive public policy solutions.

Additionally, EPI has created an infographic that highlights key points from the report including:

  • Population Growth
  • Income Inequality
  • Unemployment and Underemployment
  • Educational Attainment
  • Judicial/Corrections Indicators


An earlier report titled “The State of Working Rhode Island 2015: Workers of Color” was produced in December of 2015 and looks at “economic hardships that reflect the lingering effects of the Great Recession – a recession that has left the state with over ten thousand fewer jobs today than at the onset of the recession, relative to the state’s current population.”