Growing Up Black In America - Hiring & Firing

Growing Up Black In America – Hiring & Firing

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Growing Up Black In America – Hiring & Firing. What Happens When A Black Person Goes For A Job Interview?

When black men and women reach the age to look for gainful employment there are some harsh realities they must face in the job market. To go on an interview with the concept that it is a level playing field and all applicants have the same chance is typically wishful thinking. The reality is you find out really quick that in the job market color has its privileges.

A review of American history reveals that years ago this country considered black people as property since they were forced over here through slavery. Even with the valiant efforts of some to create racial equality it was many years before black people were even given the same chances as white people. Granted blacks were not the only ones to face discrimination because if you were not born of European descent the likelihood of you being discriminated against in the workplace was great. But black people have had more than a fair share of the discrimination that comes from trying to provide for your family and pursue the American dream.

The Equal Credit Opportunity Act has done a lot to level the playing field. Sadly even with the threat of being sued and breaking the law some still cannot fathom the fact that they are not the superior race and other races are as intelligent as they are even with all the advantages they have enjoyed.

When a black person goes for a job interview it is best to keep certain unspoken but real facts in the forefront of the interview;

Growing Up Black In America - Hiring & Firing

1) The process is not fair. Many companies are not interested in hiring the best person for the job. They are more interested in hiring the best white man for the job. If you doubt this then why do white women have to fight for equal pay doing what a white male counterpart does? Why are so many companies managed by middle- aged white men? Are there no competent men and women who are not middle- aged white men who can do the job as well as or better?

2) Last hired, first fired. Even if you are fortunate enough to get the job when its time to let people go you may find yourself at the front of the line. Job security can be a fleeting thing for a black man even if you are a great worker.

3) Can you be promoted? Yes but unlikely. When it’s time to move into management it’s not an easy task for a black man to be picked to lead a team of white people. The proof is how few companies actually promote a black man to manage even when he is good at it.

Now I know this sounds like a biased argument. Maybe I speak this way because:

Have you ever been fired solely based on the color of your skin – I have.

Have you been the first to be let go even though you produced more than your co workers – I have.

Have you ever been passed up for a promotion because you were not a white man and told to your face that was the reason- I have.

Have you ever sat with a group of white men who thought it fun to speak about poor families not doing as well as them and then being asked to agree by your white co workers – I have.

Don’t think for a minute its fair in the marketplace. It is better than it use to be but we still have a long way to go.

Growing Up Black In America - Hiring & Firing

By Dr. Jeff Davis
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