Sunday, May 09, 2010

Racists prefer Ethiopians?

YLE has published an article about different unemployment levels among different immigrant groups. The fact itself is well-known, of course, but they have interviewed Annika Forsander, the Director of Immigration Affairs for the City of Helsinki, who is saying that discrimination is the big reason why Somalis were not able to enter the job market in proper numbers, even the ones who'd lived here for 15-20 years and have degrees. The unemployment rate among the Somali citizens is 55.2%.

I have one question to Forsander: how well can an average racist employer tell a Somali from an Ethiopian? Because I can't. I can for the most part tell people from the Horn of Africa from the people from West Africa, and I figure that an average East African with a Muslim name is more likely to be Somali than Ethiopian, but you can't rely on that, and many of them have weird names anyway.

The racist employers are obviously better anthropologists than yours truly, and consistently discriminate against Somalis more than against the Ethiopians. Somalis' unemployment rate in 55.2%. Ethiopians' is 8.2%. Kenyans' is 4%. People from Ghana and Nigeria have an unemployment rate of 8% and 10%, respectively. Here are the numbers.


Toukka said...

Please address this question to Ms. Forsander and share her (unlikely) response with us.

Jussi Halla-aho said...

Do you mind if I add this question to my letter?

Vera said...

Toukka: looks like Jussi is doing this for me already.

Jussi: of course I don't mind - please do, and thanks!

Anonymous said...

"I have one question to Forsander: how well can an average racist employer tell a Somali from an Ethiopian?"

Eh, by looking at their CV?

Anonymous said...

And, BTW, if the employers prefer Ethiopians over Somalis for no good reason, that's, you know, racism by definition. So yeah, racists seem to prefer Ethiopians.

Of course, if you imply that there is a good reason for discriminating against Somalis, then I'm sure you'd like to state it explicitly?