Cities have turned to outsourcing and mergers as a panacea to financial budget constraints [a result of, to some degree, poor government policies and a lack of intelligent, creative urban planning]. Unfortunately, this has led to other problems; specifically, higher unemployment rates among the poor and "people of color".
It's bad enough (even insulting at times) that predominantly African American communities are under-represented in the workforce (public and private), but increasingly devastating are the ongoing threats ... "outsourcing" and "public mergers".
Aside from the issue of a lack of minority contractors, does outsourcing release a city from regulations and laws designed to protect certain groups from being discriminated against in hiring?
Are these private companies [that we've outsourced to] scrutinized for their hiring practices? It shouldn't matter if you are public or private, if you are receiving tax payer dollars, public monies, you should be bound by the same state affirmative action programs, anti-discrimination laws, EEOC regulations, etc. [A word to the wise ... those cities who band together to use the same private company, ... you better make damn sure those regulations and laws are being complied with.]
African Americans need to take a look at the companies their city contracts with.
African Americans (esp. in predominantly Black neighborhoods) also need to take a close look at: who is delivering their mail and packages; who is reading their gas and electric meters; who the cable guy is; who represents them; who teaches their children; ... Where I live, I see a lot of white males in these roles (with the exception of teachers who are mostly white females).
What is most alarming is that more and more Blacks (esp. Black males) are disappearing from the [full-time] workforce. While this is alarming, it is not surprising. The "system" has created problems (social, financial, political, legal, structural) that is unique, offensive, and devastating to African Americans and other "people of color". In the mix [laws that give certain groups (dominated by whites) an advantage, our unjust legal/justice system, overcriminalization, the for-profit prison system, and law enforcement (which is predominantly white and designed to act in one's own best interests) which has the power to completely destroy an individuals life], and you get some understanding why Blacks and other "people of color" have higher unemployment rates than other racial/ethnic groups.
It's high time we address these issues, and also come up with intelligent and creative ways to insure that "people of color" are properly represented in every industry in the workforce.
Top 6 Outsourcing Disadvantages: Outsourcing Disadvantages: Reasons That Outsourcing is Bad for Your Company By James Bucki
How Employers Weed Out Unemployed Job Applicants .. 1/14/2011
Employment Law Outsourcing Checklist (Mar 2006)
What is White Supremacy?