Black youth unemployment and underemployment nears 90 percent
Uhuru Solidarity Blog | 09.10.2011
Black unemployment in this country rose to 16.7 percent according to last week’s U.S. Department of Labor report.
If you add all those in the African community who have given up looking or who are underemployed with salaries that do not pay their basic expenses, the percentage doubles to 33 percent.
African youth unemployment came in at a staggering 45 percent in the recent report. When the discouraged, unemployed and underemployed are added, we are talking about 90 percent, the vast majority of young African people who have been written off by the US government as a people with no future.
The overall U.S. unemployment rate is 9.1 percent and the specific jobless rate for white people is 8 percent, less than half of the rate for African people.
In June the Philadelphia Inquirer wrote that black men between the ages of 30 and 50 “will never work again.”
In addition to massive unemployment, statistics show that 12.5 percent of African men in their 20s are in the prison system, 6 times the rate of white men.
As the downturn deepens it is clear that the burden of the crisis falls on the shoulders of the African community. The US government and the Obama administration have written off the African working class, focusing on the “middle class” (read: white population).
Although U.S. president Obama will address the U.S. on Thursday with his alleged jobs plan, he has refused to create any specific programs to address black community job creation.
As the overall U.S. unemployment rate has gone up and as the African unemployment rate has sky rocketed, white unemployment has gone down.
Yes, this is a very serious economic crisis that we are facing. But there will be no solution for us at the expense of the African community. In a country whose wealth and “opportunity” are built on the backs of the enslavement of African people and where historically white prosperity comes at the expense of the black community, the road to a viable and prosperous future must begin with acknowledgement of the crimes against African people.
Righting this historical wrong—the legacy of slavery, genocide and colonial domination of African and other “nonwhite” people that was the midwife of the capitalist system—is the only solid cornerstone for a future without war and exploitation.
Take the Pledge in Solidarity with African People today: www.uhurusolidarity.org and donate a least $10 towards the programs for African economic self-sufficiency being put on the ground by the African-led Uhuru Movement.