The 2022 Toronto Social Capital Study offers important insights on the wellbeing of Black Torontonians.
Designed to assess the health of our relationships, the Study revealed stark differences in wellbeing depending on racial identity and for Black residents in particular.
As we celebrate Black History Month, we’re highlighting findings on the unique strengths and challenges of Black Torontonians when it comes to social capital, before sharing profiles of Black-led and serving organizations creating change this month and every month.
People working together can make a difference
Black Torontonians (55%), report a much higher than average belief that people working together can have a big impact on the challenges facing their communities. In fact, Black residents have the most faith in their ability to change their communities of all racial identity groups in the city (41% city average.)
Confidence in local institutions
The level of trust in local neighbourhood centres is consistent for most Torontonians – with one exception. This confidence is highest for Black Torontonians, and it is the only public institution in which Black Torontonians have high confidence.
But Black Torontonians’ trust in other institutions like schools, the justice system, and local media is much lower than average. Community leaders flagged a number of ways critical institutions may be creating barriers to trust, including lack of representation among staff and volunteers and not truly engaging with the community.
Trust in others
While Black Torontonians have a strong belief in their ability to address challenges facing their community, their belief in the trustworthiness of others is significantly lower. Roughly 1 in 4 Black residents believe that most people can be trusted - considerably lower than the city average of 42%.
Trust in police
As a result of increased awareness of systemic racism and recurring instances of police brutality against racial minorities, residents from all racial backgrounds have less trust in the police Toronto than they might have had in the past.
The 2022 Toronto Social Capital Study shows that the gap between white and Black Torontonians' perspectives on these issues has narrowed significantly in the past few years. This seems to indicate that increased awareness of anti-Black racism has generated greater understanding among white Torontonians of the issue of discriminatory police practices.
This shift should not be celebrated but instead serve as a rallying cry on how much more work we – and white Torontonians in particular -- need to do.
Discover Black-led and serving community organizations
There are so many inspiring Black-led and Black-serving organizations working to create change in Toronto. Discover some of the donation-ready, high impact organizations working to create opportunities and serve their communities below: