Race seems to trump education when it comes to what Blacks earn in the workplace. Black workers who have advanced degrees and White workers with merely B.A.s make about the same salary, according to a new study released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
“In 2014, while white workers 25 years or older with at least an undergrad degree took home median earnings of $1,219 per week, similarly aged and educated Latino workers made $1,007, and Asian workers made $1,328 per week. Black workers with at least a college degree, meanwhile, posted median earnings of $970 per week,” reports Colorlines.
The gap got larger for more educated Black workers. Black workers who have an advanced degree earned $1,149—this is about the same as white workers who had only a bachelor’s degree ($1,132).
The numbers for 2014 were shocking but according to Colorlines writer Kai Wright, the wage discrepancy is an ongoing problem. In June, she wrote: “This is an inequity that grows from tangled roots—historic labor market discrimination, ongoing residential segregation, stubborn racial biases among employers. But it’s also one with consequences that stretch out beyond the men themselves, and that will linger long past today’s troubled economy.”
The racial income and wealth gap is a problem that’s getting more and more attention the more stats arise showing how wide it truly is. About a year ago, we wrote about how the gap between Blacks and Whites had tripled between 1984 and 2009. More recently (last month) the Pew Center reported that Whites have a media net worth 13 times greater than Blacks ($141,900 vs $11,000). The most recent Census numbers (September) found that while a White woman on average makes 78 cents for every dollar a man makes, Black women only make 64 cents. And overall, Black workers are hurt by high unemployment rates.