We’ve all been asked this question casually at the check-out or the gas pump. But the truth is, you can tell far too much about someone from the five numbers at the end of their address. There are some famous ones like 90210, but most are only understood locally. There is fantastic power in those five numbers. In Westchester, if you grow up in 10708, which includes most of Bronxville, an exclusive and thriving suburb, there is a great chance that your life is filled with opportunity and that your future is bright. If you live in the abutting 10701, which includes much of southwest Yonkers, a dense urban center, there is a significant chance that this is not the case.
This isn’t new and really shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone—we live in a world of haves and have-nots. When it comes to the complicated intersections of property taxes, local services including school districts, diversity, and inclusion, it’s hard to have the answers. We stretch into the best zip code we can so we can send our kids to best schools possible and do the best we can for our families. It’s easy to accept that the zip code crisis simply ͞is what it is.
But should crossing a line on a map mean so much? We should strive to break the confines of zip-code-dictated life opportunities and also for kids in 10701 to have the same chances as the kids in 10708. A zip code should express where you live, not where you are going.