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Chicago Mapped: Disparities in COVID-19 Testing Sites, Crime, More

By Red Line Project Staff |  @RedLineProject | Posted: Monday, June 1, 2020

Explore issues around the city through interactive maps.

Testing Positive for Discrimination

An uneven distribution of COVID-19 testing facilities reflects yet another divide among Chicago neighborhoods.

Armed with $286 million in federal funding, Illinois is expanding its COVID-19 testing efforts. In Chicago, where there are currently 62 distinctly addressed testing facilities. However, these facilities are not evenly dispersed throughout the city’s 77 community areas.

The interactive map above shows a clear lack of testing facilities in Chicago’s South Side. The southern-most facility, Christian Community Health Center at 9718 S Halsted St, is nearly 5 miles north of the city limits. Of all the testing sites, one building houses two facilities and another facility is mobile.

According to state and city health department data, Chicago's African Americans are dying from COVID-19 more than any other racial group. The lack of testing facilities in Black neighborhoods is a form of violence against those communities.

South Shore, which has the highest per capita COVID-19 death rate, has only a single testing facility for its 51,451 residents. Most of its neighboring community areas do not have any testing facilities.

The fact that African Americans are dying of COVID-19 at three times the rate of white people is not a chance occurrence. It is the result of decades of disinvestment in Black communities fueled by institutional racism. By stripping black communities of resources, American political leaders have ensured that they will not have the capacity to fight against this pandemic.

Every time a political figure depletes resources from a Black community, they are choosing to invest in systemic racism at the cost of black lives. — Sophia Lackens

Is Your Neighborhood Safe? Coronavirus in Chicago

According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, there are 118,917 positive cases and 5,330 deaths so far. The state of Illinois has conducted 877,105 tests in total.

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker released a new Community Recovery Order which allows the gathering of 10 people or fewer in public. People are also advised to use face masks and practice social distancing. — Jhanvi Verma

Chicago Crime: January-May, 2020

During the pandemic, crimes in Chicago neighborhoods are still spreading, according to data from the City of Chicago Data Portal.

The map below illustrates where the crime rate is highest in Chicago neighborhoods. The South Shore neighborhood and nearby areas have one of the highest crime rates compared to other areas during this time period.

Moreover, most of the crimes that happened in the South Shore neighborhood are battery and assault. Conversely, Edison Park and Hegewisch neighborhoods hold the lowest crime rates on the map. The map’s data covered from Jan. 1, 2020 to May 26, 2020.

The Languages of Chicago, Mapped

Chicago is one of the most diverse cities in the country, which brings along the beauty of so many different cultures living together in one city. Over the years, people from all over the world have immigrated to Chicago, making the city a melting pot of cultures. With all the diversity in Chicago, it comes as no surprise there is such a variety of languages being spoken.

According to data provided by the City of Chicago, the top three non-English languages spoken in Chicago are Spanish, Chinese, and Polish. However, the variety of languages is not limited to these three. Different neighborhoods across the city have their own populations of certain ethnicities speaking their native languages, meaning languages from all over the world can be found being spoken.

The Google Map below shows the dominant non-English languages spoken in various neighborhoods, as well as the amount of other languages spoken.

According to the US Census Bureau, in 2019, 32.8 percent of the population of Chicago was white, 30.1 percent was black, 29 percent was Hispanic, 6.4 percent was Asian, along with a few percent of other ethnicities.

Taking this data into consideration, it is easy to see why Spanish is the top non-English language spoken in Chicago, as 29 percent of the population is Hispanic. Additionally, Chinatown is home to a big population of Chinese immigrants, so it too makes sense that Chinese is a top spoken language in Chicago.

Interestingly, 20.6 percent of the population was born in another country. This means people are coming from so many different countries to Chicago. With so many different ethnicities coming and living in Chicago, it is no surprise to see that there is such a variety of languages are spoken in Chicago. — Fatima Choudry

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