A new report from NYU’s Women of Color Policy Network, “At Rope’s End,” offers a definitive examination of wealth in families headed by single mothers. The findings are not surprising: women of color, who bear the compounding and accumulating weight of racial and gender inequities in the economy, are most likely to be left with no wealth. Wealth, as opposed to income, is the balance between all assets and debt; it’s what provides a cushion in hard times and a step up for children.
With recent cuts to the social safety net pushed through Congress by obstructionist Republicans and defecting Democrats, these inequities are set to grow. “At Ropes End” offers a set of proposals to prevent this and begin to create a more equitable economy.
Among the report’s many findings:
• Single mothers possess only 4 percent of the wealth of single fathers: $100 compared to $25,300.
• Race and ethnicity are significant factors. Black and Latino single mothers have a median wealth of zero, whereas white women report a median wealth of $6,000.