Your Employer May Be Engaging in Discrimination If...
If there is a glass ceiling regarding job classification, titles, etc., your employer may be engaging in discriminatory behavior by intentionally stifling the careers of Black staff. At my previous job, Blacks couldn't get to a level 5 job classification--out of 7 possible levels. It was nearly impossible to reach a level 4 classification because that was the unwritten high-point for Black staff. As a result, level 3 employees (Black) that were due for a promotion would conveniently begin to hear about "performance deficiencies" as talk of promotions were floated around. In my tenure working at the company, only one Black employee was promoted to a level 4 status and this move was made by a White manager, who was in the process of resigning. My Black coworker believed that he only promoted her because he wouldn't have to live with the fallout of her promotion to a level 4. And, that is how it is for many Black employees around the country. There's a constant battle to break through these barriers.
Some employers have unwritten, yet specific standards/requirements FOR BLACK EMPLOYEES that are unattainable or nearly unattainable. This can also be done by creating specific standards/requirements that are higher than the standards/requirements for White staff. This would naturally result in a longer time frame being required for Blacks to make the same career moves that Whites are able to make. And, it creates hurdles for Blacks that can impede their progress—altogether—towards moving up within the company.
My former employer used manufactured performance deficiencies as justification for denying promotions. But, another way to achieve the goal of not allowing Blacks to work at higher levels is to intentionally marginalize the work and contributions of Black staff and junior level managers in order to state—unequivocally—that they are unqualified for more challenging work, supervisory roles or other top level assignments/roles.
If most, if not all, of the Black workers at your job are in entry level or junior level jobs (with a few Blacks in the mid-level job categories), your employer may be engaging in discriminatory practices. You should take a serious look at the demographics at your company by examining the jobs and levels/classifications of Black staff. Ask around. If other Blacks feel that minorities are being denied job opportunities, etc. simply because of race, start tracking unequal conditions, requirements, etc. and speak to your Human Resources staff. Doing this as a group would be best because there is power in numbers.