white flight


Definition of white flight

: the departure of whites from places (such as urban neighborhoods or schools) increasingly or predominantly populated by minorities

Examples of white flight in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But the closure of several local military bases in the 1990s fueled white flight and declining enrollment. James Rainey, Los Angeles Times, "A tiny Marin County district got California’s first school desegregation order in 50 years," 22 Sep. 2019 In the 1980s, white flight began to reshape Ascension Parish. Joan Meiners, ProPublica, "Even Louisiana’s Wealthier Neighborhoods Can’t Escape Toxic Air in “Cancer Alley”," 3 Nov. 2019 After the white flight of the 1960s, the school became almost entirely African-American, with 98 percent of its students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch. Andrea Gabor, Harper's magazine, "The K-12 Takeover," 28 Oct. 2019 What happened is a common refrain in communities like East Cleveland across the United States: redlining and block-busting and white flight and black flight and deindustrialization and the subprime mortgage crisis. cleveland, "Down but not out: How East Clevelanders aren’t giving up on Ohio’s poorest city," 6 Oct. 2019 Deindustrialisation, baleful planning and white flight all hit hard from the 1960s onwards. The Economist, "How to fix Baltimore," 1 Aug. 2019 The district’s majority-white school board resisted the merger for several years, despite federal pressure, with some predicting white flight to private schools. Washington Post, "As Dems debate busing, southern schools slowly desegregate," 11 July 2019 Some American cities coped with white flight by annexing neighboring counties to add more taxpayers. John Blake, CNN, "What both the left and the right get wrong about my neighborhood in Baltimore," 3 Aug. 2019 There's something else conservatives also fail to take into account when talking about Baltimore: The impact of white flight. John Blake, CNN, "What both the left and the right get wrong about my neighborhood in Baltimore," 3 Aug. 2019

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

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First Known Use of white flight

1956, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of white flight was in 1956

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Cite this Entry

“White flight.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/white%20flight. Accessed 22 Feb. 2020.

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white flight


English Language Learners Definition of white flight

US : an occurrence in which many white people move out of a city as more and more people of other races move in

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with white flight

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