Black Caribbean, Bangladesh and Pakistan ethnic groups experience higher levels of unemployment in the U.K. labour market particularly due to discrimination from the general white community. However, the U.K. government is determined to help the minority groups get integrated to the mainstream society through social inclusive measures such as improving academic performance and synthesizing the public to accept and recruit minority ethnic groups. as of between 1999 and 2009, minority ethnicity Irish government passed the Irish equality legislation in a move aimed at harmonizing inter-racial relationship away from the former acrimonious situation because of discrimination. Minority ethnic groups of people in United Kingdom face distinct and similar experiences while interaction with the British labour market. The essay delves into revealing similar challenges that minority ethnic groups report to experience when interacting with British labour market.
Discrimination in the labour market is quite dynamic from the sense that U.K labour market represents the most global diversified market whose objective is to maintain the current status quo. The government thus resolved to take proactive measures to improve the productivity and employability of the discriminated ethnic groups by raising academic requirements and skills. Economists perceive education and training as the best way forwards to help create economic equality and encourage cohesion. Minority ethnic groups immigrants, some of whom appear to lack labour market skills are encouraged to attend colleges and technical institutions to attain employability skills.
United Kingdom minorities feel deprived of their right to contribute to the national economy as skilled workers though most complain of rejection of their certificate from their home countries when compared to Europe and American graduate certificates. For instance, a Bangladesh Public Relations graduate is least likely to be recruited to U.K. labour market when Caucasians, Chinese and Indians have applied for the same job opportunity. In order to tackle the situation, the government recommended that the minorities promote self-employment opportunities(EMLM, 2002). The United Kingdom society is reluctant to encourage social inclusion of the minorities following the government’s policy measure aimed at opening transportation channels to connect the communities to the rest of U.K. Conversely, the minority ethnic groups requested equality when United Kingdom private and public companies recruit new workers. Equally, when the minority groups asked for consideration in the government labour market, the government only promised to reform the labour market employment programs to by creating systems that can enable minorities to attain self-reliance instead of offering these discriminated ethnic groups employment opportunities (EMLM 2002).
Public procurement and related business activity is controlled by the government. In reference to the government’s vital duty to bridge ethnic differences, ministers and inter-departmental task force teams were tasked to provide equal information to all people regardless of racial differences. The action to deliver equal labour market opportunities by recruitment using a perceived aspect ratio remained rejected and instead the ministers decided to help by advising and providing support services to employers requesting them to give the discriminated groups a chance. Though the government installed effective levers to check public procurement business activity, the fact that the ethnic groups remain discriminated runs deep into the procurement decision makers.
Period of immigration and length of time that minority groups have lived in United Kingdom reflects in their lives either success or failure to gain entry into the labour market. The first generation immigrants across ethnic minorities mostly remain self-employed or work under a deplorable wages payment scheme. Settlement patterns equally indicate the culture, lifestyle and living conditions of immigrants (Cohen & Kennedy, 2007). For instance, Pakistani settlement is predominant in the Midlands and the North regions. The high presence of the Pakistani in Midlands affects the labour market in that region in that presence of high concentrated skilled and unskilled Pakistan provide readily available labour resulting in heightened competition that leads to poor wages and subsequent poor lifestyle. Government policy to integrate the ethnic minorities are benchmarked against the increased rate of employment and upscale adjusted earnings to reflect improvement of academic standards and career profile of the immigrants during second and subsequent generation.
According to Dr. Sharon Wright (2008), high levels of child poverty registered in the U.K. occur among immigrants and minority ethnic groups. Half of the poor children in United Kingdom have one or both parents working. The rising situation of child poverty that in turn affects the educational performance, health and wellbeing of the children might force the affected children from minority ethnic groups to fall into a trap of poverty like their parents. United Kingdom government was among the first countries to create a labour market policy with a framework to move minority groups into direct jobs but at the lower end of the labour market resulting in insignificant wages (Wright, 2008). In the long-run, the investment on human skills through education and training would go to waste if the minority graduates are not placed in the middle upper earning bracket to avoid depravity (Cohen & Kennedy, 2007). Otherwise, the consistent policy to place minority ethnic groups in the lower end of the labour market will multiply poverty from one generation of parents to children and so on and so forth. Temporary employment without a promised career mobility discourage minority groups of people in UK from venturing into the market that discriminated them on grounds of race and ethnicity. In a bid to rectify the situation, the U.K. government discussed at length means of converting temporary work into permanent career work by focusing on training to equip nationals with extensive skills of innovation that can transform the lower end of labour market into a profitable career venture for the minority ethnic groups (Wright, 2008).
Low employment rates affect the minority groups thus holding the economic growth of these groups behind to the extent whereby their children are rated as poverty-stricken children whose education and capacity to penetrate the U.K. labour market deteriorate due to designed underachievement. Statistics indicate that if the employment rate of Black , Pakistan and Bangladesh groups would match the rate of Indians employed, then the British workforce is expected to swell by 180,000 (ONS, 2011).Underachievement of children from ethnic minority settlement lack proper accommodation, nutrition and social inclusive policy to incorporate their talents and labour capacity. Discrimination against specific ethnicity is based on public cultural perceptions that usually portray the minority as underachievers by their biological context. Therefore, the nature and degree of disparity varies according to the various factors chief among which is English fluency.
According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) September statistic released in 2011 concerning the U.K. labour market, the rate of employment was 70.5% representing 29.17 million people who are employed contrasted with a 7.9% unemployment rate that account for 2.5 million unemployed people, the majority of whom belong to the minority groups (ONS, 2011). Further, there are a higher number of immigrants from minority ethnic groups who are grouped under a different labour market label-the inactive rate of 23.3% representing 9.38 million inactive people aged between 16 and 64 in Britain. Total earnings rose by 2.8% from the 2010 results. The total number of unemployed people increased by 80,000 such that the total unemployed in Britain increased to 2.51 million. The most disturbing labour market issue is that unemployment affected mostly the young aged between 18 and 24 years such that there 77,000 young people lost work within half of 2011 increasing the total number of young unemployed to 769,000 (ONS, 2011). Another 1.28 million people in U.K. worked under temporary arrangements since they could not get a full-time employment opportunity. The public sector that represents the government policy fell short of its unemployment target since the sector’s number of employee fell by 111,000 between March and June 2011 from the former 6.04 million employees. Private sector employment increased by 41, 000 to reach 23.13 million, which indicates that there is hope for the minority ethnic groups to attain financial freedom if they established self-employment ventures according to the government strategic plan. However, the minority groups lack financial capital. United Kingdom government offers claimant Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) to people who become redundant. The amount of men claiming JSA increased by 12,200 to reach 1.06 million men while for the women the number increased by 8,100 to record 519,200 women (ONS, 2011). The U.K. labour is quite turbulent and volatile judging from the number of employees who lose jobs particularly among the minority ethnic groups. For instance, high levels of redundancies were reported among minority ethnic women during the months of May, June and July 2011 when over 162,000 people become redundant. One main strategy employed by the government to distribute income equitably among all groups of people is the view to increase the earnings of the minority ethnic groups, however, economic indicators determine otherwise since annual growth rate for total pay increased by 0.1% only to reach 2.8% at close of 2011. Similarly, the economy earning annual growth rate fell by 0.2% to assert that the probability of the government to increase the earnings for the minority groups remains irrelevant according to the economic strain within U.K. labour market (ONS, 2011). Therefore, the probability of the government to increase salaries and earning rate of the minority groups is dependent on whole economy earnings annual growth rate for regular pay.
The number of UK natives who are employed is 25 million compared to 4.15 million non-UK born people. Non-UK natives increased by 289,000. However, the majority recorded among the non-UK include Indians, Black Africans and Chinese who compete favorably in the labour market than the Bangladesh, Asiatic ethnic groups and Caribbean black who state similar discrimination issues during recruitment. However, the employment rate of UK born is higher at 71.0% compared to non-UK employment rate of 67.2% in 2011.
Private sector wages stood at £460 per week vis-à-vis £476 in the public sector (ONS, 2011). Therefore, the government promise to increase the total earning for the immigrants and minority ethnic groups remains a pipe dream since the economy ought to adjust appropriately to allow wages adjustment. The number of the unemployed people increased to 2.51 million within three months in 2011 and the number of unemployed people within 2010 and 2012 increased by 415,000 which represents a very huge number minding that only 50,000 UK born lost work. Therefore, the majority of non-U.K. born lost work in the United Kingdom between 2010 and mid 2011(ONS, 2011). Since the rate of redundancies increased for minority ethnic groups more than the UK natives, that indicates labour market discrimination issues not yet resolved. The total number of advertised vacancies increased to 453,000 representing 1.7 vacancies per 100 employee jobs. Therefore, what are the chances that a Bangladesh immigrant who is a U.K. national would be considered if only one among 100 graduates were considered for recruitment? The only probability is that the most qualified applicant is selected based on education background and relevance to the job description, of which a British native is highly likely to satisfy more than any other candidate from the minority groups is able to convince the selection panel because of cultural differences. Statistics indicating the number of employed per ethnic group testify that minority groups are discriminated by the recruitment agencies and staffing panels in the United Kingdom. Employment levels by country of birth and nationality (see table 1) indicate that while per year an average of over 25,000 UK nationals were employed out of the possible 29,000 employed per three months. The remaining 4000 employment opportunity were distributed unevenly among non-UK applicants whereby; European natives gained the highest share of 718 opportunities, African attracted 628 opportunities, India got 398 places and Pakistan and Bangladesh gained only a mere 290 opportunities only (See table 1). The distribution of job opportunities indicates direct discrimination against Bangladesh and Pakistan natives in the United Kingdom. Workplace prejudiced experiences in turn affect the capacity of the groups to gain connectivity of the ever expanding global world.
According to Robin Cohen, a global economy like the UK ought to develop strategies to encourage connectivity of the professional and managerial cadre in order to create employment opportunities for all ethnic groups (2008). Otherwise, the UK identify would become a nation that discourages international migration that has helped connect diverse cultures through trade and labour economy. Cohen asserts that in order to bridge the diverse differences between the minority groups and natives, the UK government ought to initiate cosmopolitan sensibility through sensitization of public to accept the diverse cultural difference that would include social inclusiveness of minority groups in public and private sector. The success of the Japanese in UK is an inspiring structural design that is quite different from the Bangladesh and Pakistan case. Cohen (2008) reveals that Japanese nationals registered with Japan embassy in UK to operate their separate private companies such as golf clubs, hotels, spas, booksellers, bars and retail markets with the help of Japanese patrons who oversaw the migration and settlement of Japanese managers, student and employees. The Japanese families unlike the minority groups in UK remained attached to vocational training unlike the Bangladesh. Equally, the main difference between the success of the Japanese UK nationals and the minority ethnic groups is the fact that Japanese create family based intimates to offer loans and financial capital for investment. On contrary, the Bangladesh and Pakistan though organized into families in their settlements remain poor and desperate due to lack of proper credit to finance self-employment opportunities. Unlike the Japanese and Chinese in Diaspora who gain functional kin-based education and social approval to form network for mutual benefits that included global connections that built up capital and progressively engage in production character aimed at creating a free flow of credit, the minority communities lack organization and similarly lack credit flow to engage in profitable self-employment opportunities. The Chinese in Diaspora have transferred a total of $60 billion foreign investment from UK into China while the Bangladesh and Pakistan seems to be sending money from their home countries to feed their Diaspora groups (Cohen, 2008, p.143).
In conclusion, United Kingdom minority ethnic groups experience similar experiences in the labor market. The most shared experience includes; unemployment, discrimination during recruitment and staffing, lack of capital finances to fund self-employment when compared to the Japanese and Chinese counterparts. Further, most minority ethnic groups lack of credible skills and approved academic qualification requirements to enter the United Kingdom labour market. In order to tackle prevalent poverty in the minority groups, the government passed a policy to improve on academic qualification and make the minority groups more employable with a promise to increase the earning rate. Conclusively, the U.K. labour market remains highly competitive and sometimes prejudice against the Bangladesh, Caribbean African and Pakistan minority ethnic groups is merely because of their different communication and linguistic style which is only a repercussion of current U.K. culture of approving only English values and culture but soon enough the nation will get used to the differences.