Project Noir (2021)

In early 2020, right before the Covid-19 pandemic began, and racial unrest became a national conversation, Brentin Mock of Bloomberg City Lab publicized a ranking of American cities based on livability metrics for Black Women.

As a Black Woman, what is it like to live in a city that experts agree is the worst place for you?

How can individuals and anchor institutions create tangible solutions?

The metrics paint a picture of stark inequity, but they fail to answer the two most obvious questions:

Cleveland ranked dead last.

While we have invested millions in equity and inclusion conversations and forums within the region, the metrics refuse to budge and conversations remain stale. Cleveland boasts three internationally-renowned healthcare hubs, but Black Women living next door to major anchor institutions suffer from poor healthcare access, experiences and are dying at alarming and preventable rates.

The Industrial Midwest is known for a strong work ethic, entrepreneurial grit, and neighborly spirit – but Black Women are routinely denied the opportunity to gain access and influence within the workplace. Our higher education institutions attract scholars discussing social justice, yet inside those classrooms, Black Women are conspicuously underrepresented and marginalized.

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