Black children, even poor ones, give less than white kids to charity, study finds

Howie Knox, CNN • Updated 15th March 2021

( CNN ) — The Salvation Army’s red kettle season is coming to a close, but one organization’s campaign hasn’t fared quite as well.

USA Today reported Friday that black children — particularly in poorer and underrepresented communities — have given half as much as white children for the same donations, despite black children having given a far larger share of their income to charity.

USA Today compared donations between black and white children to the same age group to compare their contributions to BlackRock’s use of a study showing a higher disparity. And while white children gave just over a dollar per donation, black children donated 1.5.

This black-white gap in donations was also highlighted in the Salvation Army’s “Know The Red Kettle” graphic.

“This is an example of the spotlight that the corps has been getting. The diversity issue also is coming to light, especially now with the entire country talking about some of the issues that a lot of communities are facing, from poverty to police brutality,” said Julian Brown, a Salvation Army spokesperson, to CNN.

Black children giving less than white children despite their income disparities, reported by @usatoday https://t.co/8heJ3JtJUd pic.twitter.com/SS7WcSw9N6 — USA TODAY (@USATODAY) December 7, 2018

The Salvation Army tracks its donations year-round to see what’s actually happening in a given year, Brown said.

Over the past year, the black children giving less than white children would likely be a reflection of a smaller segment of the community, he said. “The disparity in the numbers is not just on the price point, it’s also in terms of the income disparities. It’s a tremendous disparity.”

The United States Census Bureau estimated in 2010 that the median black household was around $30,000, while the median white household was around $79,000.

“There was an instance back in the 90s when it was discovered that minorities were not a significant part of giving, but we’re showing a trend that that continues to be true today,” Brown said.

The Salvation Army is not alone in the gap-scandal. CNN Money reported Thursday that Spotify’s search field, used to help customers find music, had called for less-than-polite uses. The company’s website has now updated its search field to include more sensitive terms.

Brown said the Salvation Army will be releasing an update to its website. “We are in the process of updating the website for the Salvation Army and any charity who uses the Search feature to make sure that the search fields are appropriate and respectful.”

A representative from BlackRock declined to comment when contacted by CNN Friday.

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