By Guest Contributor Lisa Wade, PhD; originally published at Sociological Images In the midst of…
[Racialicious Editor’s Note: McDonald’s has been named one of Fortune’s “America’s Top 50 Best Companies for Minorities. According to McDonald’s, “women and minorities” make up more than 50 percent of the company’s workforce.]
By Guest Contributor Jay Livingston, Ph. D.; originally published at Sociological Images
McDonald’s has distributed a pamphlet showing employees how to make a budget and stick to it. As you can see, the pamphlet is a joint effort by McDonald’s, VISA, and (apparently said with a straight face), Wealth Watchers International. The “key to your financial freedom,” they say, is keeping a budget journal.
Here’s the sample budget McDonald’s uses:
The budget is encouraging, to say the least. With an income of $2060 a month, a 2-earner family can save $100 each month.
But do you notice anything missing? Food, for example. Presumably, that comes out of the $27 a day in spending money. Transportation costs? Car payments are included, but not gasoline or upkeep. On an income of $24,000 a year, will this family have a car that needs no maintenance? And if the two earners have only one car, it’s likely someone will have to take public transportation to work. Oh, wait – maybe they both work at the same McDonald’s. And they never buy clothes.
I’m not sure how McDonald’s employees get health insurance for $20. Or home heating for free.
When Emory University president, James Wagner, made a plea for restraint in contentious debates about…
by Guest Contributor Shani-O, originally published at PostBourgie
Much is being made of Michael Luo’s piece in yesterday’s New York Times which explains how simply being black often hurts job seekers:
Johnny R. Williams, 30, would appear to be an unlikely person to have to fret about the impact of race on his job search, with companies like JPMorgan Chase and an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago on his résumé.
But after graduating from business school last year and not having much success garnering interviews, he decided to retool his résumé, scrubbing it of any details that might tip off his skin color. His membership, for instance, in the African-American business students association? Deleted.
“If they’re going to X me,” Mr. Williams said, “I’d like to at least get in the door first.”
Similarly, Barry Jabbar Sykes, 37, who has a degree in mathematics from Morehouse College, a historically black college in Atlanta, now uses Barry J. Sykes in his continuing search for an information technology position, even though he has gone by Jabbar his whole life.
“Barry sounds like I could be from Ireland,” he said.
Though Luo is working under the rather shaky premise that recent progress for blacks, like Barack Obama’s election, was supposed to improve prospects for black job seekers, he notes the opposite attitude in his interviewees:
Many interviewed, however, wrestled with “pulling the race card,” groping between their cynicism and desire to avoid the stigma that blacks are too quick to claim victimhood. After all, many had gone to good schools and had accomplished résumés. Some had grown up in well-to-do settings, with parents who had raised them never to doubt how high they could climb. Moreover, there is President Obama, perhaps the ultimate embodiment of that belief. Read the Post And All The Blacks Are Men, Pt. 301283
by Special Correspondent Wendi Muse
When I hear the words Ellis Island, one of the first things I think of is not the New York point of interest or tiring travel across waters to reach the grand goal of the U.S. of A. and its related Dream. The first words that come to mind for me are “name changes” and “assimilation.” But with the recent economic crisis and the lagging recovery process, Ellis Island comes to mind. Only this time, instead of Eastern Europeans, Italians or the Irish knocking on the door of American opportunity, only to learn that their identities must be altered or ensconced, their traditional cultures erased for the sake of infinitely approaching some Nordic white ideal, the group scrambling for the promised land of economic security and job market acceptance is black.
That’s not to say that blacks in America have never sought assimilation as a means of achieving social acceptance and equality, in fact both during and following slavery, some black Americans employed various methods of mirroring the white majority as they recognized it could mean a chance at social and class mobility. Black immigrant groups arriving to America also faced a similar challenge. Having lived in countries where race-based terminology and categorization, media representation, and general opinion of blacks may have varied from those in the United States, only to arrive and gain an externally-defined identity based on perceptions of black Americans, black immigrants may also have felt or still feel the pressure to change or deny elements of their culture, nationality, ethnicity, and ultimately race.
In the aftermath of the recession, as the competition for the limited jobs that are available has sharpened, few applicants have room for error. Unfortunately for blacks living in the United States, one possible means of avoiding the potential disaster of not even getting a foot in the door at hiring companies is deleting any and all signs of their race. It is common knowledge that “ethnic sounding” names or, in other words, names that are not of Western European, particularly Anglo-Saxon origin, often lead to discriminatory hiring practices.* Even among these names, there are specific ethnic groups whose names are least welcome in the corporate world. Unfortunately, blacks are often the common victims of this discrimination, the bearers of African-American names, despite their qualifications, often being relegated to the bottom of the résumé stack.
However, most of the fears of being rejected from job opportunities are spread through anecdotes or are the result of self-fulfilling prophecy based on a perception of inadequacy from simply being black (i.e. assuming the hiring party is white and would not be interested in taking on a black employee, thus not applying for the job at all), research often following as a result. Several studies comparing the successes (or lack thereof) of blacks and their white peers have been conducted (particularly as a means of measuring the success of affirmative action policy implementation and its continued need), though all ended with the same result: even with equal levels of educational and occupational experience, white candidates are more likely to be hired following the interview process than blacks. Read the Post The Melting Pot 2009: Job Applicants Choose Assimilation as Means of Economic Survival