April 20, 2011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Black Economic Council
Latino Business Chamber of Greater LA
National Asian American Coalition
Blacks and Latinos Urge President Obama to Question Facebook
and Silicon Valley on its Hiring Practices:
Why Are There So Few Who Look Like the President?
The Black Economic Council and the Latino Business Chamber of Greater Los Angeles, joined by the National Asian American Coalition, have urged the President during his fundraising efforts with Facebook and Silicon Valley to question their lack of transparency regarding their hiring of American workers.
These business groups have previously filed charges with the Department of Justice and the Department of Labor regarding Silicon Valley’s poor record of employment of Americans.
Facebook, for example, has refused to release its Department of Labor data (EEO-1 reports) relating to the diversity of its workforce or how many foreign workers under H-1B visas have displaced American workers.
In a recent report to the Department of Justice, the three organizations produced expert testimony demonstrating that on the average, including at Google and Apple, less than 2% of all workers are Black and less than 4% are Latino. It also showed that despite a 57% graduation rate in the sciences for women, only 25% of the Silicon Valley workforce are women.
The Black Economic Council Chairman Len Canty stated, “The Black community hopes the President can raise his presidential campaign goal of $157 million from Silicon Valley billionaires.  Unfortunately, if the President examines the workforce at Facebook and Google or other Silicon Valley companies, he will find few who look like him and even fewer who look like Michelle Obama. The Black community supports the President, but doesn’t support discrimination.”
The Latino Business Chamber of Greater Los Angeles Chairman Jorge Corralejo stated, “The one million Latino businesses in California urge the President to ask Facebook and other Silicon Valley companies tough questions, such as “Why aren’t you doing business with the Latino and Black communities?” and “Why do you favor foreign workers over our college graduates?”
The National Asian American Coalition President Faith Bautista stated, “We urge the President to immediately create a blue ribbon commission to investigate why Facebook and Silicon Valley prefer foreign workers under the H-1B visa program to qualified Asian-Americans who graduate from our best universities, including Stanford.”
——————————————————————————– The President previously announced that he hopes to raise $157 million from 450 billionaires, each of whom will raise a minimum of $350,000.
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“If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom and yet deprecate agitation are men who want crops without plowing the ground. They want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its waters. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.”———————————Fredrick Douglass
About the Black Economic Council (BEC)
The Black Economic Council (BEC) is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization created to provide Black Americans an economic platform that facilitates business formation, job creation, access to capital, home ownership, affordable housing, financial fitness and equal opportunity for employment in the workforce. The mission of the BEC is to promote the self-sufficiency of Black-American communities through structured economic development.
Contact: Andree Driskell
Black Economic Council