The COVID-19 pandemic is shining a harsh light on health inequities in our metro area and around the country. We're still lacking all of the race-related health data we need, but the data we do have shows extreme disparities in COVID outcomes. For example, in Kansas, black people make up about 6% of the population, but they account for around 33% of COVID-19 deaths. That's more that 5 times the number of deaths we'd expect if the virus was impacting all racial groups equally.
The situation in Missouri is not much better. Black people make up around 12% of the population but more than 40% of the COVID-19 deaths.
As we make our comeback from COVID-19, we must make sure that resources are directed to the communities who need them most. And we need to acknowledge that while the pandemic is effecting all of us, it is not effecting all of us equally. We can't just "go back to normal." We have to come back better than before.