Are we in a “Black Mancession”?

It’s an unfortunate statistics that minorities face higher unemployment rates as compared to their white counterparts. In her weekly “Your Career” column for MSNBC, Eve Tahmincioglu’s article, “The Recession’s Biggest Victims,’ posits that the recession has specifically impacted men. And more specifically, its impact on black men has created what she dubs a “Black Mancession.”While this label will be debated by many, can we truly call today’s unemployment rate and its impact on black men a “Black Mancession?” Several key points explored within the article certainly seem to corroborate Tahmincioglu’s point – that minorities and black men in particular, are experiencing unemployment rates that are far greater than their white counterparts – and many factors contribute to keeping the minority unemployment rate high.

The data Tahmincioglu cites goes on to support her premise; one that we can substantiate as we compare the rate of minority job seekers to white job seekers on our very own job boards The article outlines data points, including: • Black to white unemployment has always been a two-to-one ratio, according to Charles Gallagher, chair of the sociology department at La Salle University in Philadelphia. • The article went on to explain that the current market, including decline in jobs in urban areas, jobs that pay well but don’t require lots of education, government jobs and losses in good-paying manufacturing jobs have all hurt black males. • Jobless rates among for black men were at 17 percent as compared to adult white males at 7.9 percent. How can black men – and minority job candidates, combat this issue? Our own Rathin Sinha, president of America’s Job Exchange, commented for the article as it relates to minorities and the job search. As with any job search, job seekers should approach it as a multi-tiered effort that includes networking, using social media tools and expanding skill levels.

A job search strategy is a critical first step for any job seeker, and can be most beneficial for minority candidates. This includes everything from developing a search plan, to assessing your skills and determining the steps that are required to achieve success. Let us know your thoughts and how you feel the current unemployment rate is impacting you. For more career advice, visit our career exchanges, which cater to candidates with diverse backgrounds and skill sets.

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