D.C. divided between races, income brackets

Three-quarters of the District's population say that the city is more divided than it is unified, with half of those people pointing to income as the line in the sand. A recent poll by the Washington Post and Kaiser Family Foundation found that race and income divides D.C.'s citizens in nearly every instance. HIV and AIDS are deeply concerning to the black community. Approval of government officials is also split along racial lines, with whites approving more of former Mayor Adrian Fenty and blacks approving more of Mayor Vincent Gray. Living conditions and job opportunities are split along both races and income levels.

  • Schools
  • Health
  • Living and working
  • Government

How D.C. schools stack up

More than half of District residents approve of former chancellor Michelle Rhee's performance, up from 44 percent last August. Three-quarters of whites approve of Rhee compared with just 40 percent of African-Americans. On balance, current chancellor Kaya Henderson earns favorable ratings, but 54 percent of residents and four in 10 District school parents have no opinion.

HIV/AIDS a pervasive worry for District’s African-American community

More than half of District residents approve of former chancellor Michelle Rhee's performance, up from 44 percent last August. Three-quarters of whites approve of Rhee compared to 40 percent of African-Americans. Current chancellor Kaya Henderson earns favorable ratings, but 54 percent of residents and four in 10 D.C. public school parents have no opinion.

Race and class in Washington, D.C.

Q: How would you rate your neighborhood as a place to live? (click to filter by income bracket)

  • All D.C. residents

  • Less than $100,000 per year

  • More than $100,000 per year

Q: How would you describe the District’s economy?

  • All D.C. residents

  • Less than $100,000 per year

  • More than $100,000 per year

Q: How would you describe D.C.’s career opportunities for young people?

  • All D.C. residents

  • Less than $100,000 per year

  • More than $100,000 per year


Q: In general, would you say gentrification is mainly good or mainly bad? (among African-Americans)

Q: Would you describe the District’s people as mainly unified or divided?

Q: If divided, what would you say divides the people of the District?

Tough start for Mayor Gray

With below majority approval, new mayor Vincent C. Gray is off to a tough start. Fewer than half have a favorable opinion of him, down from August. Former Mayor Adrian M. Fenty is looking better in retrospect with 58 percent approval. Gray’s and Fenty’s approval are divided by race with a majority of blacks backing the new mayor and a majority of whites approving of Fenty.

Source: This Washington Post-Kaiser Family Foundation poll was conducted by telephone May 10 to 31, 2011, among a random sample of 1,342 adults living in Washington D.C., including users of both conventional and cellular phones. Interviews were conducted with 812 African American and 372 white residents. The results from the full survey have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points, four percentage points for the African American sample and 6.5 points for the white sample. Sampling, data collection and tabulation by SSRS of Media, Pa.

Full poll data is available at www.washingtonpost.com/behindtheheadlines

Graphic: The Washington Post. Published June 19, 2011.