New research highlights racial inequities in the Bay Area workforce and makes actionable recommendations for equitable economic recovery

A broad racial equity agenda for the region's workforce is a cornerstone of the future economy

January 26, 2021 12:46 PM EST

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SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 26, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- A new report shows that despite the San Francisco Bay Area's reputation for innovation and prosperity, deep racial inequities are built into the regional economy and disproportionately impact people of color. The report analyzes disaggregated data to identify workforce equity strategies that should be implemented to foster broad economic prosperity.

Advancing Workforce Equity in the Bay Area: A Blueprint for Action, released today by the National Equity Atlas (a partnership between PolicyLink and the USC Equity Research Institute) with the National Fund for Workforce Solutions, ReWork the Bay, Burning Glass Technologies, and JPMorgan Chase, highlights stark realities for workers in the region.

Occupational segregation is stark and the impact of this is widespread. Latinx workers are about 22% of the total area workforce, but more than 67% of building maintenance workers, and just 5% of computer and mathematical jobs. White workers earn more than people or color across every level of education, with the exception of Asian American or Pacific Islander workers with a bachelor's degree, who earn similar median wages to White workers.

Deeply entrenched racial inequity cost the region $348 billion in unrealized GDP in 2018 alone. Inequities in the system are felt by the whole region, and workers of color are bearing the burden.

"Across our national network of employers, workforce development boards, training providers, and community partners, the situation mirrors what this data reveals: Racial inequities are entrenched in all aspects of the workforce system," said Amanda Cage, president and CEO of the National Fund for Workforce Solutions. "To ensure the system works for everyone, we need to start fixing these issues now."

The report offers a robust plan, which centers workers themselves, to build a thriving and inclusive regional workforce: 

  • Establish a worker bill of rights.
  • Define health and wellness standards to empower workers and incentivize employers.
  • Develop community-centered economic plans.
  • Strengthen the social safety net to improve worker benefits.
  • Include workers' rights training into workforce development programs.

"Our region has generated tremendous wealth, but it has been inequitable. We want everyone, especially underpaid working people, to have jobs that allow them to both benefit from and shape the Bay Area's economy," said Rob Hope, director at Rework the Bay – the local partner of the National Fund for Workforce Solutions.

The report, data, and analysis can be found at https://nationalequityatlas.org/research/workforce-equity-bay-area.

Advancing Workforce Equity in the San Francisco: A Blueprint for Action was developed through a partnership of the National Fund for Workforce Solutions, ReWork the BayPolicyLinkUSC Equity Research Institute, and Burning Glass Technologies, with support from JPMorgan Chase.

Cision View original content:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/new-research-highlights-racial-inequities-in-the-bay-area-workforce-and-makes-actionable-recommendations-for-equitable-economic-recovery-301215435.html

SOURCE The National Fund for Workforce Solutions



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