Special Report

16 Most Segregated Cities in America

The United States Supreme Court stated in no uncertain terms in 1954 that a racially segregated school system deprives minority children of equal educational opportunities. While it has been well over half a century since that decision was handed down in the case of Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas, cities across the country remain heavily racially segregated.

Throughout much of the first half of the 20th century, racial segregation in the United States was the law of the land. Though many racist policies were reversed during the civil rights era in the latter half of the century, government officials, banks, and businesses often worked to perpetuate racial segregation through subtler means.

The lasting ramifications of such policies are still evident today, particularly in several major metropolitan areas. In the most segregated American cities, majority-black neighborhoods are more likely to struggle with poverty, limited job opportunities, depressed real estate values, and lower educational attainment rates than majority-white neighborhoods in the same city — as well as predominantly black communities in other less segregated cities.

24/7 Wall St. calculated the percentage of black residents who live in predominantly black census tracts — where at least 50% of the population is black — to identify the most segregated cities in America.

While the majority of the most segregated metro areas are in southern states, the two most segregated American cities are in the Midwest.

Click here to see the 16 most segregated cities in America.
Click here to see our detailed findings and methodology.

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