Despite the laws and legal deterrents enacted to prohibit and penalize employment discrimination, this illegal practice is still quite prevalent.
In an article from CNN.com, it was reported that statistics from the US Census Bureau African-American employees are paid lower than white workers. Despite the passage of laws such as the Civil Rights Act of 1964, today’s statistics still show a huge disparity between the wages of blacks and whites.
In 2008, the per-capita income of $18,054 of African-Americans whereas whites earned $28,502. While there are a few individuals in the group who earn a very high income, the average income is just 57.9 percent of white’s which emphasizes the racial gap in wages.
Further numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that:
- Whites earned a median of $756 weekly while blacks earned $607
- More than half of all blacks aged 15 years old or older and working full-time, earned under $35,000 while only 35 percent of whites earned under that
- Only 3.3 percent of blacks earned six-figure salaries compared to 10.8% of all white workers made more than $100,000 a year
- As for bachelor’s or advanced degrees, only 19.7 percent of African-Americans had such compared with 32.6 percent for whites
Factors for the wage disparity were attributed to family wealth, lack of education, lack of social network of successful friends and relatives. However, according to the NAACP, discrimination also played a role for the lower wages of blacks as there are documented cases of African-Americans with equal or better disqualifications who are offered less money than their white counterparts.
Employees, particularly those protected against such discrimination and harassment on the basis of their race, religion, nationality, color or gender, have the right to file a complaint against abusive employers or companies. If such wage disparity, on the basis of protected characters exists or is experienced by you, you should consult with an employment attorney to find out your legal remedies.