Latinos, blacks more likely to suffer health disparities due to wealth inequality
August 24, 2012
A recent study found that health disparities among Latino, black and white children -– but when adjusted for socioeconomic factors, differences had more to do with class than race.
Researchers interviewed more than 5,000 fifth graders in Los Angeles, Houston and Birmingham, Ala. They measured 16 health behaviors and outcomes including use of tobacco and alcohol, exercise habits, helmet use and obesity.
Black children (20 percent) were more likely than Latino children (11 percent) and whites (5 percent) to have witnessed a gun threat or injury.
Latinos were 15 percent and blacks 12 percent more likely than whites to be obese.
Latinos and blacks got less exercise and had poorer physical and psychological health.
However, when adjusted for income and education of children’s families, differences significantly shrunk.
Most of the disparities between Latinos and whites disappeared and the rest were reduced after adjusting for socioeconomic status.
Where a child went to school played a big role in what researchers found. Even within the same neighborhood, schools played a significant role.
The report said:
The child’s school was the most important mediator of disparities between black children and white children for 11 of 16 measures, whereas socioeconomic status was the largest mediator of disparities between Latino children and white children for 10 measures.
But, in the end, what does it really mean to “adjust?” The fact remains that children of color are growing up with poor physical and psychological health.
Capitalism is literally killing us.