Community Indicators for Your Community

Real, lasting community change is built around knowing where you are, where you want to be, and whether your efforts are making a difference. Indicators are a necessary ingredient for sustainable change. And the process of selecting community indicators -- who chooses, how they choose, what they choose -- is as important as the data you select.

This is an archive of thoughts I had about indicators and the community indicators movement. Some of the thinking is outdated, and many of the links may have broken over time.

Friday, January 8, 2010

JCCI Releases 5th Annual Race Relations Progress Report

The Jacksonville Community Council Inc (JCCI) released its 2009 Race Relations Progress Report during the Martin Luther King Jr. Annual Breakfast on January 8th at the Prime Osborn Convention Center. This is the fifth edition of the annual report that examines progress in addressing racial disparities and improving race relations in Jacksonville.

The 2009 report examines perceptions about race gained by annual survey and hard data that portray the realities of race and racial disparities across the Jacksonville community. Created as the result of JCCI’s 2002 citizen-led study, Beyond the Talk: Improving Race Relations (PDF), the progress report provides historical data spanning as much as 25 years across six areas: Education; Employment and Income; Housing and Neighborhoods; Health; Justice and the Legal System; and Civic Engagement and the Political System.

Jennifer Chapman of Fidelity Investments and Broderick Green of the Chamber’s Cornerstone Regional Development Partnership led the team that reviewed this year’s report and presented their findings at Friday’s Martin Luther King Jr. Annual Breakfast. “Eliminating racial disparities in our community is not only a moral imperative – it’s an economic one,” Chapman and Green stated. Among highlights in the 2009 report is the widening black-white gap in the perception of whether racism is a problem in Jacksonville. This hinders the community’s ability to come together to take action and solve the real problems that exist, according to the JCCI report.

The report reflects mixed signals in the area of education, where graduation rates improved but racial disparities widened. Of great concern were growing racial disparities in the areas of employment and income, fueled by the recession, where black minority populations were hit especially hard. Positive indicators included perceptions of neighborhood safety, heart disease death rates, declining homicide rates, voter turnout, and black felony inmate admissions, although significant racial disparities in several of these areas.

Copies of the report were distributed at the MLK Breakfast and are available in hard copy from the JCCI offices or online at For more information contact JCCI at 904-396-3052.


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