Most of the blacks and other minorities employed by Montgomery County have low-paying jobs and little authority, according to a report released last week by the county chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
The report shows, however, that the number of minority citizens the county employs is more than proportionate to the general population of the county. The nonwhite population of Montgomery is 9.8 percent, and 13 percent of the 4,565 county government employes are nonwhite.
The study -- which also shows that 62.4 percent of the employes are male and 37.9 are female -- was based on personnel data from the 1978 calendar year. Three members of the NAACP presented it to the County Council last week, using graphs and charts.
According to the study, less than 3 percent of the county employes who earn $25,000 or more a year are black. Approximately 84 percent are white males, and about 13 percent are white females.
The study showed 7 percent of all county employes earn less than $9,999 annually, but only 5.63 percent of all white employes earn less while 46.73 percent of nonwhite employes earn less. Of the nonwhite, 15.3 percent were black and most of the rest were Hispanic.
"This lack of movement is evidence of racism," said Norman Seay, president of the county chapter of the NAACP, who believes that Montgomery should establish timetables and goals for moving blacks into middle-level and administrative positions.
Leroy Warren Jr. of the NAACP told the council few blacks were in jobs with salaries of $16,000 a year and above. "These are the jobs that carry clout," he said.
Council President Scout Fosler called the presentation "instructive of where we are and how much we have to do." He asked the personnel department to update the data prepared by the NAACP to take into account the 1979 calendar year.
Director of Personnel Clinton Hilliard said he was aware of the "occupational ghetto" pattern, in which most minorities were in lower-level jobs. He said the county wants to promote more blacks, but has had difficulty because "there's a lot of turnover at the top and the bottom, but middle-management opportunities are few and far between."
The report shows the fire department has hired virtually no blacks, and the top 68 jobs in the police department, which pay $25,000 or more, are held by white males.
The report states "the main reason and impetus for the NAACP investigation of the racist employment practices of (the county) were a constant stream of complaints and criticism by black employes at all levels. Many of those voicing subject criticism and complaints are longtime, hard-working and dedicated employes who have made many futile attempts to receive redress and rectification of their numerous grievances; most of which were justified, while others were of questionable value and justification.
"Racism in many instances has become so sophisticated and flagrant that many, if not a distinguished majority, of black employes seem to feel that Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) was a 'cruel joke.'"