Jobs gap despite university success

A new report looks at the employment gap between graduates from different ethnic backgrounds
A new report looks at the employment gap between graduates from different ethnic backgrounds
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THE GROWING number of people from ethnic minorities with degrees is not being reflected in their fortunes in the jobs market, according to new research.

A new report shows the number of working-age people with degrees in some ethnic minority groups has more than trebled over the last 20 years.

However, the Resolution Foundation’s research suggests university success is not translating into similar improvements in job prospects.

Its analysis shows ethnic minority graduates are up to 12 per cent less likely to be in a job then their white British counterparts.

The report published today also reveals those from ethnic minority are more likely to be in poorer paid occupations.

Kathleen Henehan, policy analysy at the Resolution Foundation, said: “The rising share of people going to university is a well know British success story of recent decades. The progress made by black and ethnic minority groups is astounding, with the share of Indian, Pakistani and Bangladeshi graduates trebling in less than 20 years.

“But despite this success, graduates from a black and ethnic minority background still face significant employment and pay penalties in the workforce. These labour market disadvantages are a big living standards concern and mean we risk failing to make the most of the investment made in their education.

“The government is right to be exploring these and other significant race disparities. Understanding the extent and root causes of these disadvantages is an important step towards the far bigger challenge of tackling them.”

The analysis shows that 89 per cent of white British graduates are employed compared to figures as low as 78 per cent for those from Bangladeshi backgrounds.

The Resolution Foundation said some of the gap would be accounted for by the fact that there is a lower average age for ethnic minority graduates but the gap for those aged 16-to-34 is 15 per cent compared to 10 per cent for the working population as a whole.

Those graduates from black African or Bangladeshi backgrounds are more than twice as likely to be in lower paid roles than their white counterparts.

The Government is due to publish the results of its first ‘race disparity audit’ on Tuesday looking at how people from different backgrounds are treated across the public sector.

Findings already released show the unemployment rate among those from ethnic minorities is almost double that for white British groups.