Final Project: Race and Your Community
October 12, 2010
Instructor: Gail DeCina, L.C.S.W, C.A.P.
I live in Charlotte North Carolina; I just purchased a home in a community called Ballantyne. This community is on what we consider the south side of Charlotte. In February of this year, members of my community were told that there was going to be a public housing development built on a seven acre lot that has been vacant for many years. An emergency community meeting was called; several of my neighbors packed the room, all wanting information about what and where Charlotte’s next public housing development could be built. Many were concerned, especially those living close to the lot that is said to be the
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Other members of my community have never shown me any reason that I should be concerned with them or how well they treat others that may live outside of our community. However, as mentioned several times throughout this paper, the meeting about the housing development for low income families caused concern. They argued that they didn’t want this development in our area as it would decrease property value, because multi-family dwellings are in designated areas and not near the country club or golf course. They also mentioned that this would cause overcrowding in the public schools; which is certainly not an issue, as many of the children in this area attend private schools. They mentioned that there were not enough sidewalks and public transportation is limited. When I mentioned that this project would indeed cause a change in our community, but it would be good to have people of all income levels in the area, all other sides of town have these housing projects, so it’s only fair that the south side of Charlotte begin to pull a little weight. This was not liked nor accepted by a few, there were even some hecklers that mentioned that I allow them to live in my backyard. For the first time, in my history of living in this area, I experienced what some may consider racism or stereotyping. Although, it was not directed towards me, I still felt the pain that so many others in these type situations may have felt