News from EPI In Texas, uneven recovery for African Americans and Hispanics

For Immediate Release: Thursday, May 5, 2011
Contact: Phoebe Silag or Karen Conner, news@epi.org 202-775-8810

Texas has higher unemployment for African Americans and Hispanics, relative to white non-Hispanics, according to a new Economic Policy Institute (EPI) Issue Brief.  The report, Distressed Texas: Unemployment high among African Americans and Hispanics in an uneven recovery finds that since the beginning of the Great Recession, African Americans in Texas have averaged 13.6% unemployment – over twice the 6.0% average unemployment of white non-Hispanics. Hispanics averaged 9.6%.  Those uneven unemployment rates are nonetheless below national levels for all three groups in that time period.  But that somewhat rosy picture is overshadowed by the low wages that the study reveals: Texas is tied with Mississippi in having the largest share (9.5%) of hourly workers earning at or below the federal minimum wage.