In this edition of Charts of the Week: Biden’s victory came from suburbs; inequities between school-based teachers and child-care teachers; addressing the inequality pandemic.
LARGE METROPOLITAN AREA SUBURBS DELIVERED BIDEN’S VICTORY
William Frey analyzes the demographic components of President-elect Joe Biden’s electoral victory, noting that his margin over President Trump came mostly from large metropolitan suburbs. The chart indicates that the most important change this year occurred when large suburban areas registered a net Democratic advantage for the first time since Barak Obama’s 2008 victory. “This is significant because more voters reside there than in the other three categories,” Frey explains. “There was a shift from a 1.2 million vote advantage for Trump in 2016 to (at last count) a 613,000 vote advantage for Biden – a nearly 2 million vote flip.”
COVID-19 EXACERBATES INEQUITIES FOR CHILD-CARE CENTER TEACHERS
Daphna Bassok, Anna Markowitz, and Molly Michie observe how teachers working in child-care centers versus teachers working in schools are treated very differently. They point out the inequities that those in child-care centers faced pre-COVID-19, including lower compensation and worse working conditions. During COVID-19, 34 percent of child-care teachers were either no longer employed or no longer working, compared to just 3 percent of school-based teachers, as the chart shows. And, 38 percent of child-care teachers reported decreased earnings compared to 7 percent of school-based teachers. “Long-standing disparities in teacher earnings and well-being were exacerbated by COVID-19,” these authors write. “[Child-care teachers] served as frontline pandemic workers – teaching and caring for the children of essential workers – even as many families stopped paying for care and centers struggled to stay open.”
COVID-19 WORSENS THE GLOBAL INEQUALITY PANDEMIC
“The COVID-19 recession is the most unequal in modern U.S. history,” Zia Qureshi writes in an essay as part of the Reimagining the global economy: Building back better in a post-COVID-19 world, series. Income and wealth inequality have risen across the globe over the past several decades, and, as Qureshi says, “the COVID-19 pandemic is making it worse.” The chart indicates the historical trend in inequality in the 10 largest economies over the past decades, as more national income went to the top 10 percent. “[Rising inequality] has depressed economic growth by dampening aggregate demand and slowing productivity growth,” Qureshi explains. “And as the pandemic has revealed, it has increased societal and economic fragility to shocks.”