Colorlines

Economy

Black Unemployment Crisis: “Social Catastrophe” in the Making

by Michelle Chen on November 25 2009, 11:47PM

The latest employment figures sadly unsurprising: with about 35 percent of black men aged 16 to 24 unemployed, the epidemic of joblessness in Black America encapsulates a nationwide crisis. Although high unemployment and deep racial disparities are nothing new,…

Topics: Economy, Race and Recession

NPA Steps Up Demands on Treasury Secretary Geithner Today for More Action on Foreclosure Crisis

by Terry Keleher on November 16 2009, 1:47PM

Today, National People’s Action, a network of grassroots community groups from around the country, is organizing a gathering outside the Department of Treasury to demands that Secretary Geithner take more action to provide relief to households and communities hardest hit…

Topics: Economy

Food Stamp Distribution Rushing to Keep Pace with Rising Poverty Levels

by Guest Columnist on November 10 2009, 3:21PM

By Juell Stewart As America faces the fastest-growing poverty levels since the Great Depression, Democracy Now! reports that the number of families receiving food stamp assistance are on the rise: [N]early half of all US children and 90 percent of…

Topics: Economy, Race and Recession

Report Shows Asian Business Owners Really Do Face Discrimination

by Leticia Miranda on November 6 2009, 2:11PM

Oh yes, it’s true. A group of fancy researchers have now said it: Asians face race discrimination in government business contracts. A UCLA study found that Asians get the fewest local, state and federal contracts through government minority business…

Topics: Economy

Stimulus Provides a Boost but Falls Short on Equity

by Michelle Chen on October 31 2009, 6:38AM

It’s easy to see that communities of color and women are facing unique and disproportionate impacts from the recession. It’s much harder to figure out what the government is doing about it. The Recovery.gov site has presented masses of data…

Topics: Economy

Legal Dissonance: Immigration Policies Clash with Worker Protections

by Michelle Chen on October 27 2009, 6:55PM

It’s hard to make sense of the news headlines about immigrant workers these days.A police sweep in Maricopa County, Arizona, home of the famously anti-immigrant Sheriff Joe Arpaio, snatched up 66 people in the latest “crime-suppression sweep.” After figuring…

Topics: Criminal Justice, Economy, Immigration

Facing the Kool-Aid Recovery with Columbia U. Prof. Dorian Warren [VIDEO]

by Channing Kennedy on October 15 2009, 11:21AM

The AP reports that “more than 80 percent of economists believe the recession is over.” But they don’t face up to the much higher unemployment and poverty in communities of color across the US. “The last full employment program…

Topics: Economy, Video & Multimedia

Poor, Facing Foreclosure, and On Their Own in Court

by Michelle Chen on October 9 2009, 9:23PM

Now that the dust has started to settle on the foreclosure crisis, it’s clear that the dysfunctional legal framework of the financial system underwrote the heist of the nation’s wealth by Wall Street’s profiteers. Now, victims of the subprime…

Topics: Economy

Rinku Sen and Billy Parish: Young, Green, and Broke

by Rinku Sen on October 6 2009, 8:08AM

This piece was coauthored with Billy Parish of the Energy Action Coalition; it originally appeared at the Huffington Post. Last week, the Labor Department reported that youth unemployment stands at 18.2%, nearly twice the national average of 9.8%. The percentage…

Topics: Economy, Environment

Florida: No Job Creation, No Stimulation

by Debayani Kar on October 2 2009, 8:09AM

Today, Vice President Joe Biden announced specific benchmarks that the federal government will use to determine whether the Recovery Act has been a success. But none of his benchmarks include numbers of jobs created. October will see the roll out…

Topics: Economy, Environment

Ben Jealous: Personal Responsibility Alone Won’t Fix Structural Inequalities

by Guest Columnist on September 23 2009, 10:12AM

by Ben Jealous, President and CEO of the NAACP. Originally published at theGrio.com. Over the weekend I had the opportunity to share the stage with America’s legendary television dad, Bill Cosby. In a town hall forum titled “About Our Children,”…

Topics: Economy

Immigrant Workers at Home: Hired Hands Hold Family Bonds

by Michelle Chen on September 4 2009, 9:24PM

In American households, the divide between the home and the workplace is always evolving, and immigrants are shaping that evolution more than we know. Immigrant women workers today form a pillar of the middle-class family. As nannies, housekeepers and…

Topics: Economy, Immigration

Refining the Poverty Line

by Michelle Chen on September 1 2009, 7:51PM

One reason the government has spent nearly half a century fighting, and losing, the war on poverty, is that it doesn’t know where to draw the battle line. The Center for American Progress recently analyzed the inadequacy of the…

Topics: Economy

Philadelphia Takes Out Loan; Liberty Bell Repossession Imminent

by Donna Hernandez on September 1 2009, 2:53PM

Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter announced that the city is taking out a short-term loan of $250 million from JP Morgan Chase. The loan has a 3% interest rate until December 1st and will go up to 8% thereafter. Nutter…

Topics: Economy

Broken bootstraps: Black and Latino Youth in Transition

by Michelle Chen on August 28 2009, 9:56PM

They started with nothing, worked tirelessly, saved every penny, pushed their kids hard in school and sent them straight into middle-class suburban bliss. American Dream realized. The end. New research from the Urban Institute paints a more complex picture…

Topics: Economy

Glenn Beck’s Attack On Van Jones: Fantasies & Falsehoods

by Guest Columnist on August 28 2009, 4:52PM

[Editor’s note: I’ve included Glenn Beck’s piece on Van Jones above, in case you’d like to hear a narrator say ‘green jobs’ in a scary voice. I kid, but seriously: while we might see these as the obvious falsehoods…

Topics: Economy, Media

30% Unemployment, Pre-Recession: Immigrant Communities Need Real Recovery [VIDEO]

by Seth Freed Wessler on August 26 2009, 1:29PM

Crossposted at Huffington Post. Last week, the world’s central bankers got together for a little strategy session in Colorado, and declared that the recovery is on its way. This is the way it works with recessions. They ravage the world,…

Topics: Economy, Immigration, Video & Multimedia

Transit Stagnates Along with the Economy

by Michelle Chen on August 18 2009, 10:06PM

As the recession leaves millions of households barely getting by, crumbling local transit systems have made it a challenge just to get out the door. Though the demand for public transit has soared amid the economic crisis, according to…

Topics: Economy, Environment

Banking on Poor Neighborhoods

by Michelle Chen on August 17 2009, 10:18PM

Given the banking industry’s growing reputation for bilking, cheating, and otherwise betraying naive borrowers, it’s not surprising that a new bank account can be a tough sell in poor urban communities of color. So how should banks get the…

Topics: Economy

Schwarzenegger’s Blockbuster Budget Cuts Terminate the Safety Net [VIDEO]

by Channing Kennedy on August 13 2009, 9:37AM

When financial crisis hit, the California legislature didn’t raise taxes, end tax giveaways, or cut corporate welfare. Instead, they cut services to the people made most vulnerable by the recession — children, the elderly, the sick, victims of domestic…

Topics: Economy, Politics, Schools & Youth, Video & Multimedia