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Engaging Employers to Disrupt Racial Bias in the Workplace: Strategies for Workforce Practitioners

Tuesday, June 25, 2024 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

Workforce programs have traditionally focused their efforts on addressing “supply-side” barriers – those related to the characteristics of jobseekers and workers – by helping to build workers’ knowledge, marketable skills, and credentials. While these efforts are critically necessary, their success in helping jobseekers and workers of color is undermined by “demand-side” barriers – those related to the characteristics of jobs and employment processes. In particular, employment processes, from those related to advertising and hiring for open positions, to others affecting compensation, scheduling, learning opportunities, job retention and promotion, are often imbued with racial bias that can negatively impact the ability of workers, however skilled, to secure and succeed in employment. In response, some innovative workforce programs have begun to directly engage employers to improve their employment processes, particularly in ways that address racial bias and reduce employment barriers for workers of color. These efforts also often serve to help employers address their talent challenges, broadening pipelines and improving job retention. 

This webinar presents key findings on racial bias in employment processes – and strategies for employment and training programs to disrupt this bias – from Abt Global’s work on Employment Processes as Barriers to Employment in the Lower-Wage Labor Market, a project funded by the Office of Policy, Research, and Evaluation (OPRE) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families.  

Abt Global Presenters:   
Angelique Crutchfield, Senior Analyst   
David Kaz, Principal Associate (Moderator) 

Guest Speakers:    
Marlene Brostrom, Project Manager, West Michigan Works!   
Michael Perez, Quality Assurance and Compliance Program Coordinator, SERJobs 

What Will You Learn? 

  • What do we know about the forms of racial bias that exist within different employment processes? 
  • What general strategies are being used to disrupt racial bias in employment processes?  
  • What specific strategies are innovative workforce organizations using to engage employers to disrupt racial bias in employment processes? 
  • How can you lay the groundwork for similar strategies at your organization?

This event is part of Abt’s Workforce & Economic Mobility Learning Series. More information and previous recorded events are available here. 

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