in·eq·ui·ty | \(ˌ)i-ˈne-kwə-tē \

Definition of inequity 

2 : an instance of injustice or unfairness

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of inequity in a Sentence

the inequities in wages paid to men and women the inequity of the punishment led many people to believe that the defendant was being punished for his political beliefs

Recent Examples on the Web

Officials, more used to dealing with plants, animals and coastal habitats, now can consider human inequities along the coast. Rosanna Xia,, "A beach behind lock and key is turning into a fight over social justice in California," 9 July 2018 That obvious inequity was finally overturned by the Supreme Court in 1954 in Brown v. Board of Education, but not without the doctrine of separate but equal being used in the interim to obscure - and justify - horrifying amounts of discrimination. Christine Emba,, "President Trump’s ‘Space Force’ brings back ‘separate but equal’," 20 June 2018 The report traces the root of the city’s housing inequity to its earliest days, when settlers were first arriving in New Orleans. Jennifer Larino,, "8 reasons why New Orleans neighborhoods remain segregated," 6 Apr. 2018 Do the inequities in America’s criminal-justice system reflect our misconduct? Michael Harriot, The Root, "Unprotected, Underserved: The (False) Criminalization of Black America," 25 June 2018 Experts say inequities in the student-lending system are also underlined by the looming tax bomb. Josh Mitchell, WSJ, "Student-Debt Forgiveness Is a Wonderful Boon, Until the IRS Comes Calling," 24 June 2018 Instead of pointing a finger at the vast national inequities in housing, health care, nutrition, and education that rob people of color of good health, racial associations imagine race as an internal defect that drives health disparities. Jennifer W. Tsai, STAT, "You can’t tell a book by its cover — or a disease by Drake’s race," 11 July 2018 The inequity created by this tenuous class of immigrants is the source of the nativism on which Mr. Trump capitalized. Paul Donnelly, WSJ, "Give Immigrant Entrepreneurs Green Cards, Not ‘Parole’," 11 June 2018 But the livelihood of the bail bond owner depends at least partly on a central inequity in the criminal-justice system, which is that bonds tend to penalize poverty more than the severity of the offense. Gilbert Garcia, San Antonio Express-News, "DA contender tries to calm fears of bail bond owners," 31 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'inequity.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of inequity

1556, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about inequity

Statistics for inequity

Last Updated

8 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for inequity

The first known use of inequity was in 1556

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for inequity



English Language Learners Definition of inequity

: lack of fairness : unfair treatment

: something that is unfair


in·eq·ui·ty | \in-ˈe-kwə-tē \
plural inequities

Legal Definition of inequity 

: injustice also : an instance of injustice

More from Merriam-Webster on inequity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for inequity

Spanish Central: Translation of inequity

Comments on inequity

What made you want to look up inequity? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a state of commotion or excitement

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!