The Unemployment & Under-employment of people (youth & young adults) in Ethnic Communities in NYC.


By: C. Munnings




There are high rates of unemployment and under-employment in the ethnic communities of NYC, specifically in Black & Latino communities - resulting in poverty/poor health thereby limiting the opportunities for upward mobility creating a permanent underclass/working class/poor and increase in violence and crimes in these communities.



Students will determine if they want to work individually or in small groups on the topic “Unemployment and Under-employment in Ethnic Communities” to create and present a final product with policy suggestions and recommendations. Students have the option to write/create a policy/research paper, power-point or slides presentation, pamphlet/brochure, poster board, or a public service announcement.  The time frame for the entire project from start to finish is one month, approximately four (4) weeks. 



Students determine if they want to work individually or in groups. Students will research and compare the unemployment/under-employment rates of ethnic communities/people of color based on ethnicity/race and/or gender, educational attainment levels, to compare the data to the national-average unemployment/under-employment rates based on gender and educational attainment levels. The data comparison will compare the statistics at the national level, state, and local (city/municipality) levels.  Students will determine the project format of either a policy paper, pamphlet/poster, or PowerPoint presentation along with an oral presentation of findings to the class.  

The students will compile the data from the websites below:

·       U.S. Department of Labor -

·       Bureau of Labor and Statistics -

·       New York State Department of Labor -

·       NYC Dept. of Consumer & Worker Protection - 

Students will determine solutions, suggestions and recommendations to increase employment of people of color at the national level, state level and local level.

The 6 Steps of the Public Policy Analyst (PPA)

1.    Define the Problem

2.    Gather the Evidence

3.    Identify the Causes

4.    Evaluate an Existing Policy

5.    Develop Solutions

6.    Select the Best Solution  (Feasibility vs. Effectiveness)


Day 1:  Students will gather the statistical data for the pertinent information listed below:

·         National Unemployment Rates/Statistics -  ,

·       National Median Income - ,

·       Median Income in Ethnic Communities - ,

·         Employment Demographic Statistics in the high wage fields (e.g. Technology, Medicine, Law etc). -

·         NYS/NYC Unemployment Rates/Statistics -

·         Unemployment Rates/Statistics in Ethnic Communities in NYC -

·         NYC Median Income -   


Define the Problem: Worksheet#1

Gather the Evidence: Worksheet #2


Day 2:

Students will research and identify the causes of the data from the statistics. They will determine why there are high rates of unemployment and under-employment in Ethnic (Black & Latino) Communities.  They will also determine why the median salary in Ethnic Communities is lower than the National or City Median.

Identify the Causes: Worksheet #3


Day 3:

Students will evaluate the employment support policies at the national, state and local level (city) and the educational policy regarding vocational training and technical skill enhancement programs.

Students will develop their own solutions to combat the problem. Students may work in small groups to create solutions.

Students will evaluate and determine the best solutions.

Evaluate an Existing Policy: Worksheet #4

Develop Solutions: Worksheet #5

Select the Best Solution: Worksheet#6  (Feasibility vs. Effectiveness)



Rubrics  - scan0102.pdf



Thank you for your analysis and suggestions to combat, “Unemployment and Under-employment in Ethnic Communities”. Hopefully this project is an impetus for future research on societal problems that need to be addressed.  Please take the time to reflect on the project, what you have learned/gained and the potential impact on future work and policies.  



Standards met by the completion of the project/tasks.

ELA - W.2 R.1-9, W.2 R.1-8, W.2 L.3 L.6, W.2 L.1 L.2

Math - NY-8.EE.4, NY-6.6b

Social Studies - 12.G5 Public Policy

Technology - Standard 1 - Analysis, Inquiry and Design 

Art - VA/MA - Cr Creating 

Pr Performing/Presenting/Producing

Re Responding

Cn Connecting  

Creating 1. Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work. 2. Organize and develop artistic ideas and work. 3. Refine and complete artistic ideas and work.


Performing/Presenting/Producing 4. Analyze, interpret and select artistic work for presentation. 5. Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation. 6. Convey meaning through the presentation of artistic work.


Responding 7. Perceive and analyze artistic work. 8. Interpret intent and meaning in artistic work. 9. Apply criteria to evaluate artistic work.


Connecting 10. Synthesize and relate knowledge and personal experiences to make art. 11. Relate artistic ideas and works with societal, cultural and historical context to deepen understanding.