"The "official" unemployment figures for December 2009, compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), are 16 percent for African Americans, 13 percent for Latinos, nine percent for whites, yielding an average for all workers of 10 percent...The BLS survey attempts to count everyone who is actively looking for work, regardless of whether they are collecting unemployment. The real situation is far worse. The BLS also counts the invisible unemployed – those who want a job but are not actively looking, and who want a full-time job but can only find part-time work. The BLS' U-6 rate, which includes the invisible unemployed, is a far more realistic estimate of actual unemployment. The U-6 rate for all workers is 17.3 percent...The U-6 rate can be estimated as 28.0 percent for African Americans and 22.3 percent for Latinos...For African American men of prime working age (25-54), I estimate the "real" jobless rate at 26 percent. For African American teens (16-19), "real" unemployment is 74 percent...!
"...Before the economic crisis, roughly 79 percent of Black men aged 25-54 held jobs. Two years later, the figure was 69 percent. Did 10 percent of Black men become uneducated or lose their job skills in a two-year period? Did one quarter of working African American teens suddenly develop a 'bad attitude?' The more obvious and correct explanation is simply that the jobs are not there..."
To read the whole article, which outlines succinctly the true causes of African-American joblessness and what we can expect in the immediate future, go here.