Income and wealth among Minnesota’s Black families is falling at a time when the state’s economy is strong.
A large contributor to this crisis is Minnesota’s growing employment disparities. Recently Black and Brown Minnesotans are reportedly much more likely to be unemployed than White Minnesotans with the same job qualifications – some reports say African Americans are four times more likely to be unemployed than White Minnesotans.
We all have a role in increasing economic equity in our state. Here are four things Minnesota business owners and hiring managers can do in the next few weeks to address employment disparities.
1) Share Your Knowledge & Opinions
The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) is surveying over 3,000 employers statewide to understand how Minnesota businesses are addressing workforce diversity. The anonymous online survey closes Friday, February 26, 2016. Results of the survey will be used to create resources for businesses to increase the diversity of their workforce. More about the employer survey from DEED.
2) Attend Unconscious Bias Training
The African American Leadership Forum (AALF) is offering a training on Unconscious Bias designed to allow participants to:
- Understand surface biases;
- Identify the consequences of holding on to bias; and,
- Learn ways to consciously confront bias and take corrective action.
The training is March 15, 2016 from 8 am to noon in St. Paul. Registration and more details.
3) Recruit Diverse Candidates at March 30 Career Fair
Show job seekers and the community that you value diversity in your workplace by meeting with candidates at the Forum on Workplace Inclusion Career Fair at the Minneapolis Convention Center. Employers already participating include Toro Company, Mayo Clinic, U.S. Bank, 3M, Ameriprise Financial and others. Exhibitor registration end March 4, 2016. Exhibitor registration information.
4) Help Job Seekers Prepare for Interviews
Volunteer human resources representatives and career experts at the Career Services Center March 29-30 provide free resume reviews, interview practice, veteran’s career transition, and other job search resources. The Career Services Center prepares job seekers for the free Career Fair on March 30 at the Minneapolis Convention Center. These events are part of the annual Forum on Workplace Inclusion. Employers and others experienced in coaching job seekers are asked to contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com to donate time to encourage job seekers.
- Minnesota Disparities Overview (Minnesota Compass)
- Black Minnesotans of all backgrounds up against disparities (Star Tribune)
- The Worst States for Black Americans (Wall Street 24/7)
- Unemployment Disparity in Minnesota (Minnesota Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights)
- Blacks Nearly Four Times More Likely Than Whites to Be Unemployed in Minnesota (City Pages)