The Health Consequences of Labor Market Segregation

TitleThe Health Consequences of Labor Market Segregation
Publication TypeReport
Year of Publication2001
AuthorsOh, HJoo
InstitutionSouthern Sociological Society
KeywordsDemographics, Employment and Labor Force, Health Conditions and Status, Women and Minorities

Despite the increased participation of people of color and women throughout all levels of work organization, racial and gender segregation of the labor market persists. These divisions can be considered a generating and perpetuating source of societal inequality, because work is a primary determinant of social and economic status. By implication, the segregation of the labor market may contribute to socioeconomic disparities in health status that have persisted over time. To investigate this hypothesis, I analyze data from the 1992 and 1994 waves of the Health and Retirement Study, which provides information about black and white women and men whose ages range from approximately 51 to 61 years at baseline (1992). The sample is limited to adults who were working in 1992 and who survived until the 1994 interview, during which they reported self-ratings of their health. The empirical results indicate that gender mix is not as important as racial composition. A lower percentage of whites is linked to worse self-reported health for both women and men. In addition, women's health reflects significant race differences in the effects of racial composition. Circumstances involving fewer whites pose health advantages for black women, whereas the health of white women suffers.

Endnote Keywords

Health/Labor Supply/Social Inequality/African-Americans/Health Status

Endnote ID


Citation Key5430