The question of whether Baltimore is a leading data city underscores a coalition of public agencies coming together with a nonprofit to build a platform that could assist youth educational attainment and economic mobility.
The group comprises the Baltimore City Health Department, the Mayor’s Office, Baltimore City Public Schools and Baltimore’s Promise (BP). The four entities are using a grant from Modernized Anti-Racist Data Ecosystems (MADE) for Health Justice to support the implementation of the Baltimore City Youth Data Hub.
The coalition has a primary objective of creating a locally-focused data ecosystem with a health emphasis, rooted in principles of anti-racism, equity, justice and community. Its work is connected to Maryland Senate bill SB0870, which was passed in 2022 and cross-filed in the General Assembly with HB1276; both bills established the Baltimore City Youth Data Hub’s existence. According to the website of the de Beaumont Foundation, of which MADE for Health Justice is a new initiative, the hub particularly focuses on the needs of Black, Indigenous, Latinx and immigrant youth.
The coalition hopes the data hub will provide valuable insights to city leaders and youth service providers in Baltimore through the consistent production of information that helps expand access to youth opportunities and services throughout the year.
Equipping city leaders with the knowledge needed to make informed decisions regarding funding, policies and strategies that support Baltimore’s youth and families is a top priority for coalition leaders like Baltimore’s Promise CEO Julia Baez. The leader of the organization, which focuses on supporting the city’s children and families, said that the money will be directly disbursed to people and groups involved in research and advisory roles.