New research from the Economic Policy Institute shows that African-American workers earn less than their white counterparts regardless of educational attainment. Progress Illinois looks at the report and gets reaction from the Chicago Urban League.
The U.S. labor market remains tough for today's young high school and college graduates, but their job prospects are brighter than they were for past groups of students who graduated in the wake of the Great Recession, finds a new analysis by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI)
Nonetheless, recent graduates continue to experience poor wage growth as well as unemployment and underemployment rates higher than pre-recession levels, according to the liberal think tank. Unemployment rates among young college and high school graduates also remain higher for blacks and Hispanics than whites.
"Though there has been improvement since the unemployment rate for young workers peaked in 2010, the labor market has still not completely recovered," reads EPI's report. "Thus, the class of 2016 will be the eighth consecutive graduating class to enter the labor market during a period of weakness. The evidence suggests that because of their unlucky timing -- in other words, through absolutely no fault of their own -- this cohort is likely to fare poorly for at least the next decade."
Chicago State University students and their supporters rallied at the Thompson Center Monday morning, demanding state action to avert a possible shutdown of the predominately black university due to the budget impasse.
Holding signs that read, "Black minds matter" and "Save CSU," students urged Gov. Bruce Rauner and state legislators to end the ongoing fiscal battle that has left Illinois without a budget since July 1.
CSU serves over 4,000 students and depends on the state for 30 percent of its budget. The university and other Illinois higher education institutions have gone unfunded during the stalemate in Springfield. As a result, CSU declared itself in a financial state of emergency last week, increasing the possibility of layoffs and cuts to keep the university operating. CSU officials have previously stated that the university could go broke by March.
CSU senior Lakeisha Perry, a psychology major on track to graduate next December, said the budget uncertainty is "nerve-wracking."
"You work so hard and then this happens," she told Progress Illinois at the Thompson Center.