Racial Discrimination Effect on Labor Market

2767 WordsJun 16, 201812 Pages
The earliest form of racial discrimination against Asian Americans was encountered during the California Gold Rush. The Gold Rush attracted Chinese immigrants who came to California to fill the high demand for laborers. However, as more and more Chinese immigrated to California and the lower-paying labor jobs were filled, the Chinese began filling higher-paying positions typically held by Whites. As a result, an anti-Chinese Movement was formed followed by the enactment of the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 which prevented any additional Chinese immigration into the United States. Essentially, Chinese were discriminated against by the Whites due to fear of the Chinese taking over their jobs. After World War II, the federal government ended…show more content…
In most cases, the relationship between education and wages is widely accepted since lower education level equates to lower knowledge and skills, qualifying workers for only low-paying jobs. Also, the inability to speak fluent English may have hindered Hispanic wages and employment. The inability to communicate in English affects individuals’ performance especially in jobs that require close interaction with English-speaking customers (16). Latinos working on a full-time basis earned approximately $549 per week in 2011 which represented only 71% of what was earned by Whites. This wage gap has been steady even during recession periods. However, unlike other ethnic minority groups, the wage disparities between Whites and Latinos are also clearly attributable to differences in education, work experience, and other demographic characteristics (Charles and Guryan 510). According to the statistics from researchers, the effect of poor English on wages varies, with some reports indicating 30% of the wage disparity between Hispanics and Whites is attributable to the language barrier. Hispanics who do not speak English are relegated to positions which require little to no customer interaction, primarily in the agricultural industry. The challenge of speaking fluent English is common among the Hispanics. As noted in 1976, only 18% of the Hispanic workers in the United States spoke fluent or even partially-fluent English. In 1979, the overall annual earnings for
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