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African-American and Hispanic retail workers are at the bottom of the totem pole when it comes to staffers who are most likely to be paid more, promoted or given full-time jobs, a study conducted by the NAACP and the public policy group Demos found.

African-American sales clerks, cashiers and low-level managers are paid the least of all the ethnic groups occupying those retail positions, the Associated Press explains. Both African Americans and Hispanics are paid less than white people who hold the same retail positions. Both groups are also less likely to hold management positions.

A policy expert from Demos argues that if the workforce doesn’t represent America’s changing population, the public won’t be adequately served.

“If workers from [black and Hispanic] racial and ethnic categories continue to be systematically excluded from opportunity, that means that our labor market will be serving less than half the population in a way that’s really meaningful for families who want to pursue the American dream,” said Catherine Ruetschlin, a Demos senior policy analyst.

Retail is third in the list of industries with the most African-American workers (education and health services come before it). But even still, African Americans are paid the least and are not given many opportunities to climb the ladder, the study found.

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