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New Data: Black Americans Most Likely to Have Been Laid Off As Result of COVID-19; Latino Americans Most Likely to Report Reduced Hours and Lost Income


Strada Education Network, a national social impact organization dedicated to forging pathways between education and employment, has released a new analysis of Public Viewpoint: its weekly, nationally representative survey tracking the impact of the global pandemic on Americans’ lives, work and education. The analysis examines the last four weeks of survey data by race and ethnicity, finding that black and Latino Americans disproportionately report job and income loss, respectively.

Over the last month, 66 percent of Latino Americans have reported some kind of negative impact on their work as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, more than any other group and substantially higher than the 51 percent of white Americans who say the same. Black Americans, by contrast, are most likely to have lost their jobs over that period, with 25 percent saying they were laid off, compared to only 15 percent of white Americans.

“Peoples of color are experiencing more widespread job and income loss, and they have different perspectives on the role of education in meeting the challenges they are facing,” said Dave Clayton, Ph.D., senior vice president at the Strada Center for Consumer Insights. “It’s critical that policymakers, employers and educators understand both the similarities and the differences that exist as they develop solutions to help Americans navigate the impact of this crisis.”

Among the findings from Public Viewpoint: COVID-19 Work and Education:

Impacts on Work

  • Black Americans are more likely to report being laid off (25 percent as compared to 15 percent of whites), but Latino Americans are most likely to report overall income loss (66 percent) and specifically having their hours or shifts reduced (40 percent).
  • Among business owners, Latino and Asian Americans are most likely to have lost income:
    • 80 percent of Latino business owners and 73 percent of Asian-American business owners have reported lost income.
    • In comparison, 65 percent of black business owners and 61 percent of white business owners have reported lost income.

Perspectives on Additional Education

  • Latino (38 percent) and Asian Americans (36 percent) are more likely than white (33 percent) and black Americans (31 percent) to believe they will need more education if they lose their jobs.
  • When asked where they would go if they had $5,000 to invest in future education or training, a majority of Americans strongly favor online education, but preferences vary by race and ethnicity.

Each week, 1,000 Americans are surveyed for Public Viewpoint. To date, over 4,000 Americans have been surveyed. This week’s analysis reflects aggregated responses from March 25 through April 16.

Public Viewpoint is produced by Strada Education Network’s Center for Consumer Insights, a research team that studies the experiences and perceptions of American adults in order to inform the development of a more consumer-centered learning ecosystem. Strada Center for Consumer Insights provides the nation’s only education consumer database, which includes more than 350,000 completed surveys about the education and work experiences of American adults.

View the full Public Viewpoint findings at: https://www.stradaeducation.org/publicviewpoint/.

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