A new report by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights (KCHR) shows improvements for women and minorities in state government.
The number of female employees reached a new high by the middle of 2003 and although the number of minorities slightly decreased between 2001 and 2003, the workforce increased in diversity and the state exceeded its Affirmative Action plan goal for minority employment for the fourth consecutive year. The gaps in salary between women and men and minorities and whites also improved.
The report, titled, The Status of Women and Minorities in Kentucky State Agencies; an analysis of employment, job levels and salaries, used statistics provided by the Personnel Cabinet covering the 18 month period of January 2002 to June 2003. It reviews full-time employment and salary data in state departments, constitutional offices and the 15 cabinets. It offers a comparison with the commission’s previous report issued in 2001 and evaluates the Kentucky State Government Affirmative Action Plan of 1996. Affirmative Action plan goals are based on state population statistics. KCHR is authorized by KRS 344.180 to conduct studies and publish reports regarding equality issues.
“The report provides some good news,” said Beverly Watts, executive director of the commission. “Kentucky is moving in the right direction.”
The number of women increased from 19,050 (49.8 percent) in 2001 to 19,759 (50.09 percent) in June 2003. The total 2003 workforce consisted of 39,446 people. This still falls short of the state’s Affirmative Action Plan goal of 52.42 percent for women, but reflects steady progress.
The number of minority employees was 2,992 (7.82 percent) in 2001 in a workforce of 38,259 people. According to the new report, there were 3,016 minority employees in a workforce of 39,446 people, a decrease from 7.82 to 7.65 percent, still above the Affirmative Action plan goal of 7.51 percent.
There was in increase in minorities other than African American from 9.7 percent in 2001, to 12 percent in 2003. African American employment decreased from accounting for 90.3 percent of the total minority workforce in 2001, to being 88 percent of the total minority workforce in 2003.
By June 2003, women made 93.4 cents for every dollar that men made, an improvement from 2001, when the figure was 89.8 cents to the dollar. Likewise, minorities made 93.6 cents for every dollar that whites made in 2003, compared to 89.8 cents to the dollar in 2001.
Nine cabinets met their Affirmative Action plan goals for number of women employed: Economic Development; Education, Arts and Humanities; Families and Children; General Government; Heal Services; Labor; Personnel; Revenue; and Workforce Development.
Six cabinets did not meet their goals for number of women employed: Finance and Administration; Justice; Natural Resources and Environmental Protection; Public Protection and Regulation; Tourism Development; and Transportation.
Seven cabinets met their goals for number of minorities employed: Education, Arts and Humanities; Families and Children; Finance and Administration; Health Services; Justice; Labor; and Personnel.
Eight cabinets did not meet the goals for number of minorities employed: Economic Development; General Government; Natural Resources and Environmental Protection; Public Protection and Regulation; Revenue; Tourism Development; Transportation; and Workforce Development.
The commission will issue the next report on the status of women and minority employment in Kentucky state agencies in July 2005.
The public may obtain a copy of the report by visiting our website at www.state.ky.us/agencies2/kchr/, or by calling the commission at 502.595.4024 or 1.800.595.5566.