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EEOC report finds lack of diversity among top ranks of civil service

The latest annual Equal Employment Opportunity Commission report on the federal workplace is not happy summer reading for diversity advocates.

The numbers, graphs and tables document a story they know too well.

Despite well-meaning efforts and all the right things said by Obama administration officials, racial, ethnic and gender diversity in the federal workplace remains a quest. The percentage of women in the workforce dropped slightly, while percentages for Latinos, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders rose almost imperceptibly from fiscal 2010 to 2011. There is a higher percentage of African Americans in the workforce than in the population, but that’s certainly not so in management.

As with previous reports, it is in the upper reaches of the federal civil service where Uncle Sam’s hoped-for reputation as a model employer takes a hit.

African Americans were 18 percent of the federal workforce in 2011, but just 8 percent of the senior service. Latinos were 8 percent of the workforce, less than their portion of the population, and under 4 percent of the top ranks. For women, the respective figures were 44 percent and 30 percent. White men easily jumped over this dismal pattern. They were 39 percent of the workforce, yet 59.5 percent of senior-level employees.

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