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The folks at Northwestern University, Harvard, and the Institute for Social Research in Norway took a long, hard look at field experiments on hiring discrimination spanning 1989-2015, and you know what they found? Americans are still racist AF.

More specifically, the research revealed that anti-Black racism is just as prevalent in hiring as it was back in ’89.

“Many scholars have argued that discrimination in American society has decreased over time, while others point to persisting race and ethnic gaps and subtle forms of prejudice,” the study reads. “The question has remained unsettled due to the indirect methods often used to assess levels of discrimination.”

So a team of researchers decided to examine hiring trends in discrimination against Black and Latinx individuals, looking at everything from callback rates to previous studies done on the subject. A total of 24 studies were analyzed, representing over 54,000 applications that were submitted for more than 25,000 positions.

Main takeaways:

On average, white applicants receive 36% more callbacks than equally qualified African Americans. White applicants also receive 24% more callbacks than Latinxs. Applicant education, gender, study method, occupational groups and local labor market conditions did little to impact results. Researchers did not see a change in the levels of discrimination against Blacks since 1989. But they did find declining discrimination against Latinx folks (though barely).

“The results document a striking persistence of racial discrimination in U.S. labor markets,” the study concludes.


Check out more of the findings here.