By Stephone Coward
- Black workers had the highest resignation rates due to burnout
- 48 million people voluntarily left their jobs in 2021
The balance of power in employee and employer relations has shifted when 48 million people voluntarily left their jobs last year. Companies across the country are understaffed at such an unprecedented level ushering in the Great Resignation. The U.S Department of Labor reported that health care and food services that employ a significant majority of Black workers had the highest resignation rates due to burnout from being underpaid and overworked.
Why This Matters: A Great Resignation was inevitable, and corporations have been living on borrowed time, as we continue to fight for pay equity in this country. Black women are paid 63 cents for every dollar paid to a non-Hispanic, white man, and because of that are leaving the traditional job market.
The gap between the haves and have-nots, not to mention the ever-increasing racial wealth gap between Black and non-Black households, have been key predictors. As the Great Resignation roars on, working from home that was once considered impossible for many sectors, quickly became possible after companies saw that they were losing money due to staffing. However, this was either too little, too late, or not an option for many Black workers.
We have been living through the age of corporations and big business for the last few decades. During this time, we have witnessed the slow demise of Main Street and the unstoppable rise of Wall Street. Instead of striving for balance in the triple bottom line (people, planet, and profit) approach, these corporate entities are guided by a profit over people philosophy with a large profit margin as their Northstar.
Situational Awareness: Gone are the days when people stay at a job until retirement, thanks to the emerging gig economy. If employers don’t get the memo and prioritize people as much as they prioritize profit, the Great Resignation won’t let up because people are no longer accepting business as usual.
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