For the second time in as many months, a study of hiring patterns in the Maryland state government has concluded that while blacks are not underrepresented in the total work force, very few of the state government's policy-makers are black.
The findings of a study released today by Del. John W. Douglass (D-Baltimore), a black member of the General Assembly, echo the findings of a similar study by the Maryland NAACP in November: "The statewide job category in disproportionately small numbers is the administrative category. Here blacks comprise only 8 per cent of the total."
Douglass' study singled out the governor's and lieutenant governor's offices, the Department of Budget and Fiscal Planning, and the Legislative Department as "agencies which were the most severe violators," where future minority recruitment efforts should be concentrated.
In Gov. Marvin Mandel's office, Douglass' study shows, only two of 62 employees are black. One of them, Mandel aide William (Box) Harris, is listed in the top job category. "officials and administrators. The other is listed as a clerical or office worker.
There are no black employees in the offices of Lieutenant Governor Lee III, the study says. Lee's office confirmed that statistic, but neither Lee nor his top aide was available for comment this afternoon.
In the Budgetary and Fiscal Planning Department, Mandel's budget office, 21 of 204 employees are black, according to Douglass' study. There are no blacks among the 16 administrators in the department, and only four among 74 employees listed as professionals, lawyers, systems analysts and economists.
The Legislative Department encompassess all of the services the state furnishes the General Assembly, Douglass reserved some of his sharpest words for this department, which works for him: "The legislature has shown a marked failure to employ blacks in meaningful positions and numbers," reads the study. "Obviously, the legislature has failed to set a good example."
Of the department's 348 employees, only 21 are black, according to the study. Most of the black workers in the department are professionals or office and clerical workers, the study shows. There are no black administrators in the Legislative Department.
Mandel issued a statement in response to Douglass' study through his press secretary, Thom Burden. "The governor has yet to receive a copy of Mr. Douglass' report," said Burden. "However, any suggestion that there has ever been an effort to discriminate against anyone on the basis of color is absolutely without foundation.
"Furthermore, the governor has no intention of dismissing any member of his personal staff because of the color of his skin."
Douglass' study is followup of a survey of black employment in the state done 18 months ago. The study could draw no overall conclusion on the change in racial composition of the state's work force because of a statistical inconsistency, Douglass said.
Maryland's population is about 20 per cent black, according to the 1970 census. According to Douglass' study, about 28 per cent of all state employees are black.
Most of the black employees are concentrated in two categories: 4,802 of the 14,150 blacks employed by Maryland's government are service and maintenance workers, and 2,939 are office and clerical workers. There are 2,337 black professionals in the state government, the study indicates.
Douglass said he plans no legal actions on the basis of the study. He said it will be used by the General Assembly's black caucus to urge the appointments of more blacks to policy-making positions in the bureaucracy.