Major Companies Pledge to Hire 100,000 Low-Income and Minority New Yorkers By 2030

Amid rising unemployment and inequality, can these New York tech and finance companies deliver on their word?

What Happened:

Leading companies in tech and finance, including Amazon, Verizon, and JPMorgan Chase, have launched a workforce initiative targeting underserved populations through a new nonprofit, the New York Jobs C.E.O. Council. 

So far, 27 companies have joined. Together, they will partner with the City University of New York (CUNY) and other local universities to develop curriculum and apprenticeship programs to recruit and better equip minority workers for entry-level roles in tech, finance, and business. Through this pipeline, the New York Jobs C.E.O Council is aiming to employ 100,000 people by 2030. 

This initiative comes amid serious economic hardship in New York City. June 2020 saw an unemployment rate of 20% for New Yorkers, which was nearly double the national rate of 11.1%.

Why it Matters:

Inequality in the Workforce:

COVID-19 has laid bare racial inequalities in the workforce, notably the risks posed to front-line workers, which are jobs predominantly held by people of color. Black people are 3.5 times more likely to die of COVID-19 than white people, while Latinx people are twice as likely to die from the virus.

Increasing access to employment with paid sick leave and work-from-home opportunities is a step to reducing racial inequality in terms of public health and economic wellbeing. Still, there is plenty more room for improvement, considering there have only been 18 black CEOs on the Fortune 500 list since 1999. 

Addressing Underlying Causes for Job Loss

As advancements in automation continue to cut jobs, an initiative that reduces barriers and provides in-demand skills for minority workers could prove promising for job creation.