Print options

April 03, 2014

Report Says US Minorities Losing Economic Ground

by VOA News

A new report has concluded that blacks and Latinos in the U.S. are losing economic ground compared to whites.

The National Urban League said Thursday in its annual report called "One Nation Underemployed" that American blacks and Latinos are both recording higher unemployment and accumulating less wealth than whites.

It said that under-employment for the two racial minorities is pronounced. The report said that more than 20 percent of blacks and 18 percent of Latinos are jobless or working part-time when they want a full-time job compared to just under 12 percent of white workers.

While the U.S. economy has steadily but unevenly advanced since the depths of the country's recession in 2009, the jobless rate was still 6.7 percent in February. But black unemployment was 12 percent compared to 5.8 percent for whites.

The National Urban League's president, former New Orleans Mayor Marc Morial, said there is a "great divide" in the U.S. between those who have homes, secure jobs and savings accounts and those who have little or no economic security.

He said major U.S. corporations have recovered from the recession "to break earnings and stock market records." Meanwhile, he said many Americans have been left with a host of economic woes, including job losses, home foreclosures, credit denials and cuts in government aid for education.

U.S. President Barack Obama says there is a "dangerous and growing inequality" in the country. He has called for increasing the U.S. minimum wage to $10.10 an hour for low-income workers, but conservative lawmakers have so far rebuffed his efforts, saying employers would cut jobs if forced to pay the higher wages.