Get Teens Back to Work: Why the Federal Government Must Invest Now in Teen Jobs

This decline in teen employment has had a disproportionate impact on low-income and minority teens. Poor teens are less likely than middle class teens to find summer jobs, and poor African American teens are much less likely to find work than poor white teens. Poor Hispanics are better off than poor African Americans, but worse off than poor whites.

The situation for poor African Americans is compounded by the fact that they tend to live in neighborhoods with other low-income families and the deprivations in community resources that result. In contrast, many poor whites live in middle-class neighborhoods, and they can benefit from the resources available in these neighborhoods.

All of these factors lead to a situation where teens who would likely benefit most from summer jobs – poor, African American teens - are the least likely to find them.

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