How long will we study inequity…
...before we do something about it?
Every year without fail, a new study comes out. Whether it's for Black History Month (UK or US edition), Black Women's Equal Pay Day (getting later than you think each year) or for some other reason.
You know the studies I mean. They talk about achievement gaps, health disparities, pay gaps, perceptions, how Black women are treated as potential leaders, and so on. That last report, brought to us by the ultimate purveyors of “water is wet” studies, McKinsey had a bunch of findings that weren't news to me, or to any of us.
You can get the full rundown from Dana Brownlee, but in a nutshell, McKinsey’s study finds that Black women are more likely to have their credentials or judgment questioned, and to be mistaken for someone at a junior level. As I said, water is wet. Almost every Black woman I know - and I know a lot - has experienced this, as have other people of the global majority.
Often, these disparities and gaps are measured in the abstract as if they don't have real consequences for real people, many of whom look like me. But two things are missing for me in practically every report. First, the context. Second, the action.