Although the recession ended in June 2009 many middle-class workers are still struggling to maintain a living. Of those unemployed, a large number are Blacks who have lost their jobs as government employees. Over the past year, state and local governments have eliminated at least 142,000 positions including public-sector jobs. Public-sector jobs include work with the postal service, Department of Transportation, public hospitals and schools and police and firefighter professions. Not only are Black people losing work, but they are losing work at a rate twice that of Whites.
Since the Reconstruction period in this country, masses of Black people in cities across America have counted on government jobs as their main source of income. However, last summer the rate of unemployment for Blacks hit its highest peak since 1984, 16.7 percent. This type of economic downturn severely affects the Black middle class because they are one-third more likely to be employed in the public sector than Whites. Studies also show that these layoff rates may affect the income bracket of the children of middle-class Black Americans.
Read more at The New York Times.