Unemployment Rate Differences Between Races in the US
The average rate of unemployment in the United States of America is 4.8 percent. That is the average since the year 1948 to 2015. In May 2015, the rate of unemployment was 5.5 percent. The statistics mean that up to 8.7 million persons in the United States are out of jobs (Western & Pager, 2012). It would be assumed that this rate of unemployment would reflect equally among the different ethnic groups in the United States. However, this is far from the truth. Statistics shows that the gap in the unemployment rate between the whites and blacks in the United States has never been wider. The study conducted in May 2015 show that the unemployment rate among white people is 6.6 percent. On the other hand, the rate of joblessness among blacks is 12.6 percent (Brand & Xie, 2010).
The information is alarming as it shows that the unemployment rate among the black people is twice than that of the white people. The difference has always existed since time immemorial. It is intriguing to note that never in history has the unemployment rates been equal, or the black people had an upper hand on this issue. It is true that the black people have come a long way in the employment sector. The climax of the search for equality in the economy was observed in the 1960s where marches and demonstrations were done to promote equality. It is unfortunate that not much of the previous situation has changed to this day.
What are the main causes for the gaping employment rate between whites and blacks in the United States of America? What are the available ways the country can correct this situation?
Western, B & Petit, B. (2005). “Black-White Wage Inequality, Employment Rates, and Incarceration.” University of Chicago. The article recognizes the tremendous difference in employment rates between the white and the blacks in the United States. The article goes ahead to stipulate that even among the employed, huge gaps still exist. The article presents that white people are likely to earn more than their black counterparts. The article seeks to divert from the explanation that states that the rationale for the difference is the corresponding difference in cognitive skills acquired during the early years (Taylor et al, 2011). What the description says is that it is expected for there to be a difference in employment rates between the two races as the two races display different levels of cognitive skills at an early age.
The article greatly disputes this explanation and attributes the difference in employment rates in discriminatory practices that are biased against the black people. The report claims that managers are more likely to offer jobs to sounding white names as opposed to sounding black names. Also, the article stipulates that white males are more likely to get more job leads than black males. That situation allows the white people access job opportunities that are advertised publicly and those that are not. There are real life experiences told by black people who noticed a change in the interviewer’s mood when they went to introduce themselves (Ritter & Taylor, 2011). That provides evidence that most managers are discriminatory towards black people. It is not a case of job performance, not a case of education and qualification; it is a case of discrimination.
Guiliano,L., Levine, D., Leonard, J. (2008). “Manager Race and the Race of New Hires” The Journal of Labour Economics. The article suggests possible solutions to slaughtering the monster that is discrimination in the employment sector. The author recognized the major causes of this discrimination as stereotyping, social grouping and in group preferences. The explanations present that discrimination is caused by the categorization of people into groups within the society. After the social categorization, most people within the groups will grow closer to each other as opposed to people outside their groups. It is what is prevalent in the American society. There are different groups that are based on either sex or race. The groping began a long time ago and had already happened even before the 1963 marches for equality in job and opportunities (Pager et al, 2009). Therefore, it has been difficult for people outside the group to penetrate in a different group. Since most managers are white, they are most likely to hire according to their in group.
The article suggests solutions to these challenges to balance the scale. Firstly, organizations would introduce interdependence measures between people from different group categorizations. An example is that a manager would be rewarded for the good performance of an employee. Secondly, organizations would introduce accountability measures to ensure that employment decisions are based on merit and not stereotypes or biases. Thirdly, organizations would introduce formalized evaluation systems to give every person an equal chance of employment. Also, the systems would ensure that all jobs are advertised to prevent under deals and tips being made to a section of the population (Guiliano, 2008).
The conceptual framework seeks to establish the variables that are relevant in identifying answers to the research question. The first variable in the research paper is the identification of the various causes that have led to the prevalent differences in employment rates among races in the United States of America. The second variable is the possible solution to the problem of differences in employment rates between races. The result upon the identification of the variables is a situation where there is equality in employment opportunities and benefits between races in the United States of America.
Research Design and Methodology
Secondary data is the primary source of information for purposes of this research paper. The collection of secondary data includes the intensive and keen reading of journals and publications on the subject and research topic. Attention will be given to previous research on the subject that has already been done in different areas. Sources of secondary information will include national legislations and state legislations, literature and writings by legal scholars. Access to online libraries like EBSCO, Academic Search Complete, and scholarly articles would provide valuable data for purposes of the research. The data collected would be analyzed to provide sensible information that can be used to inform the research question.
The research paper identifies various answers to the research questions. The major causes of differences in employment rates are identified as discrimination, stereotypes, social categorization and in-group preferences. However, not everything is lost as the research identifies several solutions to counter this situation. The suggested solutions include interdependence between groups, the formalization of evaluation mechanism and accountability in organizations.
The journey towards equality in the United States of America has been a long and eventful one. From the very first day, the forefathers desired to create a free country where every man has freedom and liberty. Every man in the country has the right to pursue happiness. It is true that all over the world, America is known as the land of opportunities, the land of success and prosperity and the mother of democracy in the new age. However, it is a time that the country paused and took a long hard look at its dark side. It is the side that most Americans choose to ignore, push aside or simply step over; that has to change. Differences in employment rates among the blacks and whites have significant negative results on the society. The research paper implores the country take steps to balance the playing field and establish equality for all, regardless of their race.
Brand, J. E., & Xie, Y. (2010). “Who Benefits Most From College? Evidence for Negative Selection in Heterogeneous Economic Returns to Higher Education.” American Sociological Review, 16-20
Guiliano, L., Levine, D., Leonard, J. (2008). “Manager Race and the Race of New Hires” The
Pager, D., Karafin, D., Bayesian, B. (2009). “Statistical Discrimination, Stereotypes, and Employer Decision-Making.” Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Sciences, 3-9
Pager, D., Western, B., Bonikowski, B. (2009). “Discrimination in a Low Wage Labor Market: A Field Experiment.” American Sociological Review, 10-16
Rose, J. (2013). “Disparity Analysis: A Review of Disparities between White Minnesotans and Other Racial Groups.” State of Minnesota Council on Black Minnesotans 9-10
Western, B & Petit, B. (2005). “Black-White Wage Inequality, Employment Rates, and Incarceration.” University of Chicago
Western, B, Pager, D. (2012). “Identifying Discrimination at Work: The Use of Field Experiments.” The Journal of Social Issues, 2-9