Because we understand that racial disparities—which are often the unintended result of public policies and structures—overlay all of our issue areas, we consciously undertake efforts that neutralize racially inequitable impacts. Although race is a social construct with no scientific basis, personal biases and discriminatory practices have led to disparities along racial and ethnic lines. Just as wealthy families hand down their advantages to future generations, racial/ethnic disparities have impeded generation upon generation, and continue to do so.
Systemic racism isn’t accidental – it’s the result of public policies that benefit one group while disadvantaging others. Our state and national tax systems have been built to benefit those at the top (who are mostly white) while disadvantaging people of color. This report looks at concrete ways New Mexico can make our tax system more equitable.
Before COVID-19 hit, New Mexico was moving steadily forward on a path to more broadly shared prosperity. But our over-reliance on revenue from oil and gas extraction put a dent in our economy even before the pandemic and resulting recession. Legislators must enact policies that stabilize our revenue streams while improving racial equity via our tax code. Their best options for doing so are listed in this policy brief.
Despite the fact that immigrants work, pay taxes, and are a vital part of our economy, many were left out of the relief packages Congress passed to help blunt the pandemic-caused recession and assist displaced workers and small business owners. Not only is that harmful to many New Mexico children and families, it also will impede our ability to rebuild our economy. This report looks at ways the state an address the problem.