Black Males and Mayor Bloomberg : A solution to the unemployment disparity?


The latest unemployment rates reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics show virtually no change in the nation’s unemployment rate at 9.1 percent or 14 million people.

For blacks that percentage is even higher at 16.7 percent and for the black male population it is almost 18 percent, which is almost double that of their white counterparts.

The future for black males as a group looks grim as a June 2011 study by the College Board’s Advocacy and Policy   found that 51 percent of Hispanic males and 45 percent of African American males ages 15-24 will end up unemployed, incarcerated or dead.

In August New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced a $127 million plan to reduce the disparities among Black and Latino men, including $30 million of his own money.

Now while the effort being made by the mayor deserves it accolades, will it really make it a difference or will the money be dispersed to programs and never actually reach whom it is intended to help.

Mayor Bloomberg has not made the best choices in selection of officials lately.

In January he hired former chairman of Hearst Magazines, Cathie Black to head the largest school system in America . Black had no clue how to run a school system with no education or government experience. Three months after her appointment she was out. Not only was it an embarrassment for Bloomberg, but also it called into question his judgment.

Facebook users had no problem letting Bloomberg know exactly how they felt using statements like:

 Kev Sa My God, do you not know that cash flooding solves very little. Another misdirected attempt to social engineer something you and your elitist doctorate-heavy friends think you can fix. You enable and create the very problem you are trying to solve. August 4 at 8:46am ·  2 people

Krissy Jones Wow I’m extremely impressed by this move! You’re doing the right thing Mayor. Thank you. August 4 at 8:47am ·  2 people

One cannot help, but be curious as to what the provisions of this $127 million initiative will be. Who will oversee the money?   How exactly will these proposed  “job recruitment centers” help get employment for young men who may have criminal records or not have completed school?

Should we feel confident in the initiative because the mayor  “put his money where his mouth is” and is using some of his personal funds?

Or is this a political stunt that is seen all too often?

Bloomberg’s heart may be in the right place, but it will take more than a press conference and checkbook to begin to make real change on a decades old issue.

To read the full Young Men’s Initiative, click here.