Every ten years, the U.S. Census Bureau compiles information showing participation in the workplace by women and minorities in various parts of the country. Last week, the Bureau began releasing labor statistics from its 2010 census. This information is important to government contractors with Affirmative Action Plans (AAPs) because it is used to determine possible underutilization of women and minorities by these employers in communities where they do business. Changes to these demographics can result in the need for employers with AAPs to update their plans or to take additional steps to adjust to new demographic changes.
As expected, the 2010 census data shows large increases in the Hispanic workforce when compared with the 2000 census. These changes will require analysis of many AAPs to determine if the current workforce reflects these new demographics. For the first time, the Census Bureau will be releasing the AAP labor demographics on a five-year rather than the traditional ten-year interval. While requiring more frequent plan adjustments, this shorter time period should avoid some of the large changes resulting from ten-year gaps in measurements.
The Census Bureau is expected to release the full labor data later this month. In addition to race and gender information, this second release will include information on disabled worker presence in various geographic locations.