Racial Discrimination The U.S. Labor Market

2828 words - 11 pages

Employment discrimination is a controversial issue in the United States. Employment discrimination is discrimination in hiring, promoting, terminating, and compensating employees. Examples of discrimination include age, disability, equal pay, genetic information, national origin, pregnancy, race/color, religion, and gender. Throughout the years, the United States has enacted numerous laws to try to eliminate employment discrimination. While most of the legislation is effective, discrimination in the workforce still exists today. This paper will focus on one major type of employment discrimination, racial discrimination.
Unfortunately, racism existed in the past and still exists today in the labor market. Discrimination due to ancestry, physical characteristics, culture, and association are also considered types of racial discrimination. Racial discrimination in the workplace can have detrimental impacts on a society’s economy. Racial discrimination in the workplace occurs when an employer fails to hire or promote an individual because of their race. Racial discrimination also involves treating someone unfavorably because he/she is of a certain race or because of personal characteristics associated with race (EEOC, 2013.). Employers use racial characteristics to create a disadvantage for a current employee or prospective employee.
Racial discrimination in the labor market cost companies millions each year. Legal costs and a possible loss of development from the exclusion of a qualified employee are among the expenses faced by the company. For example, an employer can force qualified employees out of their positions. This can potentially cost the firm huge profits. Unfair treatment of employees can also lead to reduced employee productivity, which costs companies millions in the long run. Employers also face turnover expense for forcing an employee out of their company due to racial discrimination. According to the Level Playing Field Institute (2007), discrimination costs U.S. employers sixty-four billion dollars on an annual basis. The Level Playing Field Institute (2007) also states that people of color are three times more likely to cite workplace unfairness as the only reason for leaving their employer than heterosexual Caucasian men and twice as likely as heterosexual Caucasian women. The survey also suggests that most of the employees who were treated unfairly credited racial discrimination as the cause of mistreatment. From litigation expense to employee turnover costs, companies pay a hefty price for racial discrimination The two most common types of racial discrimination cases litigated today are racial disparate treatment and racial disparate impact.
Possibly the most evident type of labor racial discrimination cases in the United States are racial disparate treatment. Racial disparate treatment occurs when an employee alleges that he or she was treated differently than other employees who were in a similar...

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