The public sector is the most important source of employment for black Americans (2011) [View all]
Last month's disturbingly high black unemployment rate is evidence that African Americans have been disproportionately affected by the shrinking public-sector.
The public sector is the most important source of employment for African Americans and a key source of high-paying jobs, especially for black women, according to a study by the U.C. Berkeley Department of Labor. African Americans are 30% more likely to hold government jobs than other workers; from 2008-2010, 21.2% of black workers were employed in the public sector, compared to just 16.3% of non-black workers.
The numbers explain why African Americans have been hit so much harder by government budget cuts and layoffs than their non-white counterparts....
At the same time, the public sector continues to eliminate jobs, including 17,000 in August alone. Overall, government employment has dropped by roughly 600,000 since 2008.
The ongoing contraction of state and local governments suggests that the black unemployment trends aren't likely to reverse any time soon.