Mary Jo Bane Photo

Mary Jo Bane

Thornton Bradshaw Professor of Public Policy and Management, Emerita
Office Address
79 John F. Kennedy St. Taubman Bldg 456

Bane, Mary Jo. "Race, Poverty and Public Policy." KSG Faculty Research Working Paper Series RWP05-030, March 2005.


Poverty rates in the United States vary dramatically by race and ethnicity, ranging from 24.3 percent for African-Americans to 8.2 percent for non-Hispanic Whites. This paper reports the contemporary data and explores the extent to which racial differences in poverty rates reflect differences in family structure and education. Finding residual differences, it the explores the importance of racial stigma, racial discrimination and racial segregation. It places these facts in the context of Catholic Social Teaching, and suggests directions for both government policy and the church.