A USA Today study examining racial segregation in cities but not including Native Americans is another example of U.S. society ignoring American Indians, a Haskell Indian Junior College professor said today.
The study, published in Monday's edition of the newspaper, examined 1990 census data in 219 metropolitan areas to analyze the extent of residential segregation of blacks, Hispanics and Asians. It ranked Lawrence 211th, one of the least segregated.
Dan Wildcat, chairman of Haskell's natural and social sciences department, said the study's failure to include Lawrence's 2,000 native people in its calculations was "typical."
"When you look at segregation studies or other studies of minority issues, you'd be surprised how often they exclude native peoples," he said.
The USA Today study used a "segregation index" to indicate how closely the racial and ethnic mix of each neighborhood matches the mix in the whole metropolitan area.
For instance, Lawrence was assigned a combined segregation index of 35, meaning that 35 percent of either minority or white residents would have to move from segregated neighborhoods to achieve integration.
The study also includes black, Hispanic and Asian indexes showing how segregated each minority group is from whites.
Lawrence's minority indexes: blacks, 38; Hispanics, 21; Asians, 43.
The newspaper said its study did not analyze other groups, including Native Americans, because of their small numbers in most metro areas.
Wildcat said that if American Indian populations had been included in the count, the survey of segregation in Lawrence would have produced different results.
"Indians make up 3 percent of Lawrence's population, a significant number," he said. "To exclude them would be a big mistake.
"If you look at different neighborhoods, it is clear that a large number of native peoples live east of Massachusetts (Street)."