Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Miami's Wealth Divide

 Miami-Dade county has the second-biggest gap between rich and poor of all large metro areas in the US, according to a 2019 report – only the New York metropolitan area is more unequal.

 The county’s 33109 zip code – which comprises Fisher Island’s 216 acres and its 800 residences – is the richest not just in the county but in the entire US, according to a Bloomberg analysis from last year. 

Zip code 33034, which covers parts of the rural but quickly developing cities of Homestead and Florida City, plus some unincorporated areas, is the county’s poorest, according to a Miami Herald analysis. For the 23,000 people in its 280 sq miles, the per-capita income is $10,608.

"I’m a Trumper,” said 93-year-old doctor Irwin Potash, speaking from quarantine in his $1.6m condo on Fisher Island, a private island in Florida with a golf course, two marinas and 17 tennis courts that’s just a seven-minute ferry ride from South Beach. If Irwin Potash gets sick, the University of Miami has a health center on Fisher Island. “You can even get a helicopter,” he said.

Forty miles south-west of Potash, in the agricultural community of Homestead, Antonia, a field worker , emigrated from Mexico 30 years ago and is now a citizen. She pools enough to afford a $1,500-a-month apartment where she lives with her daughter, her daughter’s husband and two granddaughters. “I’m voting for Biden,” she said in Spanish, and she thinks her fellow agricultural workers will, too. “We feel rejection and discrimination from the current president,” she said.

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