NPR

'Barely Treading Water': Why The Shutdown Disproportionately Affects Black Americans

As the government shutdown enters its fourth week, federal workers are struggling to make ends meet. But according to Jamiles Lartey, the shutdown is having a disproportionate effect on black workers.
The US Capitol in Washington, DC, January 14, 2019, is seen following a snowstorm. Source: Saul Loeb

As the government shutdown enters its fourth week — becoming the longest in United States history — federal workers around the country are struggling to make ends meet. But according to Jamiles Lartey, a reporter with The Guardian, the shutdown is having a disproportionate effect on black workers and their families.

African-Americans make up a higher percentage of federal workers than they do of the non-government workforce. That's in part because, for generations, government work has provided good wages and job security to African-Americans who faced more overt discrimination in the private sector.

Ari Shapiro of NPR's sat down with Lartey to talk about some of the ways this

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