White flight is a term for the demographic trend where working- and middle-class white people move away from increasingly racial-minority inner-city neighborhoods to white suburbs and exurbs.
The phenomenon was first named in the United States, but has occurred in other countries as well. Some scholars have noted the impact of redlining, mortgage discrimination, and racially restrictive covenants on white flight: these factors denied or increased the cost of services, such as banking and insurance, to residents in minority inner-city neighborhoods. Some social scientists suggest that the historical processes of suburbanization and decentralization are instances of white privilege that have contributed to contemporary patterns of environmental racism. In some of the largest cities in the United States, the trend started to reverse itself in the 1990s through a process sometimes called gentrification.
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