Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Report Finds Hispanics Face Higher Unemployment

According to a report released yesterday by the US Congress’ Joint Economic Committee, the unemployment rate for Hispanics in the US has soared in recent years.

A number of factors are cited as the cause of this increase including the overrepresentation of Latinos in industries that have been hardest hit by the recession such as construction as well as the concentration of the Latino population in particularly hard-hit states like California, Nevada and Florida.

Entitled, “Understanding the Economy: Unemployment in the Hispanic Community”, the report finds that the collapse of the housing market had a greater impact on the Latino workforce than on the general population.

In 2006, Hispanic unemployment was at a low 4.9%.  At its peak in March of this year, that number had spiked to 12.6% which is almost 3 percentage points higher than the national average.

While the report did not examine immigration status as related to employment rates, one belief is that undocumented workers such as those who work in the construction/home building industry, are the most impacted by the recent economic downturn.  However, this is also a segment of the workforce that is most mobile and able to relocate depending on where the jobs are.

Of the report’s findings, Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez (D-CA) said “Long term economic recovery will depend on initiatives that create jobs and expand opportunity for all Americans, including Hispanics,”

“Latinos are the fastest-growing minority group in the United States and, as such, are a vital part of our workforce. It’s important for Congress to understand the unique economic challenges and opportunities facing this community, particularly as we begin to rebuild our housing and construction sectors.”

Los Angeles Times

U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee