For many Americans, particularly in communities of color, personal economies are not improving. Unemployment rates for both African Americans and Latinos are twice the national average; therefore creating an economic disparity higher than ever before. There have been several events throughout history which have served as stepping stones to equal rights for African Americans such as the March on Washington and President Roosevelt’s establishment of the Committee on Fair Employment Practice. Prominent Civil Rights group, NAACP, has declared that “bridging the racial economic inequality requires greater economic opportunity and access… Diversity and inclusion is central and essential to closing the racial economic divide”; which is why last year the group relaunched its consumer program grading private sector industries. The Opportunity and Diversity Report Cards assess diversity and inclusion in areas where job creation and wealth-building opportunities thrive. A report released last November showed Hotel and Resort industries in need of improvement. People of color are underwhelming represented in this sector. In fact, they are exclusively represented in the low-wage low-skilled workforce. In advocacy efforts by NAACP, an online interactive map has been created which highlights diversity among the top hotels and tourism sites nationwide, in hopes people will support these. Over the past few decades, the tool has enabled corporations to create opportunities for minorities to compete in the workplace. “These opportunities not only grow African Americans’ businesses and communities, but also the nation’s economic strength.” Sociologically, this speaks to the idea of raising the nation’s human capital. Providing all people with equal playing grounds, such as education and job opportunities, will better the economy all a whole because each individual is purposeful, useful and necessary in the process. Marginalizing and stratifying citizens only impedes overall economic prosperity and growth.
Rayna Tyson. April 19, 2013. 1:26PM