The Depression affected Black workers more than it did the white community. Black workers were all ready getting bottom of the barrel wages and treatment. When the Depression hit, “more black workers than white lost their jobs. In 1931, about one out of every three Blacks was jobless and one out of four whites" (Meltzer 210). The National Recover Administration (NRA) was formed to help workers by establishing minimum wages. This only hurt black workers though. Because employees did not want to pay a black equal minimum wage as a white, many blacks lost their jobs and were replaced with white workers. Although life seemed particularly hard for blacks there was some help out there for them. “Other programs, however, provided blacks with aid and helped them to ameliorate their current situations. The Public Works Administration (PWA) created jobs for blacks though construction programs and neighborhood clean-up; it was controlled by Harold Ickes, who, as a white man, had aided the NAACP in the 1920's.” A. Phillip Randolph, founder of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, did not like the discrimination in federal jobs. He ordered a march to Washington with thousands of members from the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters. President Roosevelt did not want the march to happen, so he finally issued the Executive Order 8802, which detailed that there would no longer be racial discrimination in the federal work place. The Depression was a very hard time for black workers, but through their struggles, future good was able to take place.
Meltzer, Milton. The Black Americans: A History in Their Own Words 1619-1983. New York: Crowell, 1984.
Peterson, Christina. The Great Depression. http://www.fcps.edu/westspringfieldhs/projects/im98/im985/topics/depress2.htm [continues]
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