Other research backs up that disparity. Algernon Austin, director of the race, ethnicity and the economy program at the Economic Policy Institute, last year analyzed 2009 data on teens who were not attending school.
He found that 16- to 19- year-olds from poor families, whose income was below the poverty line, were less likely to be working than teens whose families had more money. That was true regardless of race or ethnicity.
“In terms of need, it is backwards,” he said.