Latinos Continue to Face Highest Rate of Unemployment Despite Some Job Gains

Latina women have been hit particularly hard by job loss from COVID-19, UnidosUS report shows

WASHINGTON, DC— While today’s job report shows some progress to begin reversing massive job losses, Latinos across the country continue to experience disproportionate economic impact from the pandemic. The May unemployment rate for U.S. Latinos, 17.6 percent, remains the highest of any racial group, according to a new report from UnidosUS, (formerly National Council of La Raza), the nation’s largest Latino civil rights and advocacy organization.

The May Latino jobs report shows the devastating toll that the pandemic is still having on Latinas, in particular. More than 3 million households in the United States are headed by Latinas, and the majority of Latina mothers are key breadwinners for their families, meaning their households rely heavily on their wages.

Latinas are bearing a large brunt of the pandemic’s disastrous impacts and are almost twice as likely to be unemployed as White men. Even before the spread of coronavirus, Latinas were struggling economically as they have been overrepresented in low-wage occupations and have been provided with limited access to benefits like paid leave.

“This pandemic has further amplified the deep economic inequities faced by Latinos, especially Latina women. Latinas make up a disproportionate number of the workforce in sectors that have seen their employment rate plunge, like food processing, hospitality, retail and health care,” said Orson Aguilar, the Director of Economic Policy at UnidosUS. “The federal government must act immediately to direct more relief which would financially empower Latinas and those in the broader community who have lost their jobs and those who remain vulnerable while doing essential work.”

To view the full Latino jobs report for May, click here.