Who We Serve

Cultural and Economic Diversity

Brooklyn is a borough rich with culture and diversity, with a mix of high, medium and low income neighborhoods and a broad range of racial and ethnic populations.  Each of these communities has unique needs related to traditions, language, education, and economics.

A number of Brooklyn neighborhoods have high concentrations of public housing. These areas, which often have concentrated poverty, are sometimes referred to as neglected neighborhoods, lacking appropriate services for meeting basic needs. At the same time, rapid gentrification is evident in many traditionally lower income and minority Brooklyn neighborhoods, resulting in reduced affordable housing and higher prices at local businesses. The consequences of gentrification are described by some in positive terms, including increased access to healthy foods.

Brooklyn’s Health Landscape

  • The greatest proportion of potentially preventable hospital admissions is for chronic conditions including respiratory conditions (asthma, COPD), cardiovascular conditions (heart failure, hypertension), and diabetes.
  • The percentage of cigarette smoking among adults in Brooklyn is roughly on par with NYC and NYS rates, but rates vary widely by neighborhood.
  • The leading cause of premature death in the borough is cancer.
  • Among the Brooklyn population, the age-adjusted percentage of adults with poor mental health for 14 or more days is lower than the state and city rates.
  • Brooklyn’s uninsured account for approximately 16% of all the uninsured individuals in New York State