One of the greatest and most crucial socioeconomic differences that must be faced by our Government and business sector alike is the drastic shortfall between the average wages paid to native Americans compared with white employees. The lack of research into the racial wage gap concerning American Indians is an issue in an of itself, considering that this is a group known to be statistically the poorest in North America.Overall, according to the latest study conducted in the early nineties, American Indian families earn just over 60% of the national average.
The data that we do have indicates that the wage difference is less in the public sector, where there is a 20% gap between colored and white worker’s wages. This statistic is condemnable enough in itself, but in the private sector the difference hits 34%. To illustrate, a qualified medical sonographer currently earns an average ultrasound technician salary of $64,900 per annum. According to this data, a native American employee with the exact same qualifications and skills would earn $51,920 per year in a public hospital or $42,830 in a private hospital. That is a shortfall of $12,980 to $22,070 compared to his rightful entitlement- almost the equivalent of a full time wage in itself. This abject injustice is what workers in our country, in this day and age are being subjected to.
With such blatant and extreme prejudice still evident in the workplace, it is hard to see the larger problem of equality getting far without employers and businesses taking responsibility for this wage disparity and refusing to uphold it. All North Americans who are trained equally and contributing to their workplace equally should be on an even footing when it comes to pay negotiations, and we cannot ignore our failure as a nation in this regard any longer.