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data on African American consumers
Black Buying Power:
$679 Billion (2004)
Black U.S. Population:
Top Five Black Cities
- New York
Top Five Black Metros:
- New York-New Jersey
- Los Angeles
Top Five Expenditures:
- Housing 110.2 bil.
- Food 53.8 bil.
- Cars/Trucks 28.7 bil.
- Clothing 22.0 bil.
- Health Care 17.9 bil.
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Black-owned gas distribution firm alleges race discrimination by BP
28, 2005) A racial discrimination lawsuit has been filed in the United
States against the United Kingdoms largest oil company, British Petroleum
The lawsuit, filed on behalf of Washington, D.C. based, DAG Petroleum
Companies, a company owned and operated by African-Americans, cites
multiple violations of the Civil Rights Act. The suit seeks both monetary
damages and a mandate that BP be required to implement and follow
meaningful diversity policies, treat African-Americans equally with whites
and train their employees in fair contracting practices.
The claim arises following a speech by BP Group Chief Executive Officer
Lord John Browne in which he admitted that BP has a history of engaging in
racially discriminatory practices. Browne stated that during his tenure
with BP he had personally heard the following racially derogatory
statements as explanations for why minorities, including
African-Americans, have not received equal treatment by BP:
-- "We don't want to be politically correct."
-- The investors would think we'd got religion if we started talking about
-- "Promotion wouldn't be in their own best interests."
-- "Ok, let's appoint one and see how they get on."
-- "They're not qualified..."
-- "We can't relax our performance standards."
-- "We need a common culture."
-- "Our people won't tolerate quotas."
Browne also stated these remarks are the "corrosive litany of prejudice
and discrimination. And of course it has been very effective."
DAG's complaint goes on to state that despite Browne's speech, and while
under his continuous leadership, BP has failed to remedy the
discriminatory practices Browne described. Despite its having over 14,000
stations in the U.S, a substantial portion of which are located in
predominantly African-American communities. Since Browne's speech in 1999,
BP has not entered into any automotive fuel distributorship agreement with
any African-Americans. In 1999 it had zero, and six years later it
continues to have zero. Also, since the speech BP has not increased the
number of African- Americans within its management ranks.
The complaint alleges that although DAG had the support of Washington,
D.C. Mayor Anthony Williams and Virginia Governor Mark Warner, knew of
DAG's interest, experience and financial capability to distribute
petroleum products to BP's 181 stations in the Washington, D.C.
metropolitan area, because DAG is owned and operated by African-Americans,
BP entered into a bogus bidding process through which it funneled the
distributor rights to two white-owned companies.
"The world's third largest publicly traded oil company has one of the
worst records when it comes to diversity in its employment and supplier
and distribution chain. Out of the thousands of stations they operate
there is not one African-American distributor, not one. The record speaks
for itself," stated Billy Martin, DAG's chief counsel.
DAG reports it is in the process of gathering other African- Americans who
have experienced racial discrimination by BP in order to mount a class
action lawsuit on behalf of all African Americans.
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'Buying Power' report shows black consumers spending more on home life
As the American economy continues to move sluggishly,
African-American households are curtailing their spending in many
categories, including food, clothing and basic household items, while
investing more in home repair, home entertainment and consumer
electronics. Although they are trimming back, black consumers are still
spending more than their white counterparts on most of these products.
According to the newest edition of “The Buying Power of Black America”
report, African-American households are tightening their belts when it
comes to dining out, expanding their wardrobes, and leisure activities out
of the home. At the same time, they are increasing their spending on home
repairs and remodeling, audio and...
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