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See also: gray collar


Alternative forms[edit]


From gray and collar by extension of white-collar and blue-collar, perhaps with gray being seen as intermediate between white and blue.


gray-collar (comparative more gray-collar, superlative most gray-collar)

  1. Of or pertaining to working-class professions that do not involve significant manual labor, such as skilled technical professions, combining elements of blue-collar and white-collar.
    • 1963, R. Robb Taylor (editor), University and community; proceedings of a conference, April 25-26, 1963, under the auspices of the Association of Urban Universities and the Johnson Foundation, page 58:
      But if you look at the employment trends in the country, you find that the white-collar (and gray-collar) activities have become increasingly important...
    • 1964, National Ice Association: Forty-Seventh Annual Convention, Democratic Party Convention, OK State Fed of Labor
      Your present plan is rated, not for the so-called blue collar people, it’s rated for white-collar and that thin gray line, the gray-collar worker. In many small businesses you don’t know who is blue-collar and who is white-collar, the boss often doing all kinds of work around the firm.
    • 1971, Richard Patrick Coleman, Social Status in the City, Jossey-Bass, page 68,
      At the lower-middle level, the typical Negro male was a gray-collar worker in one of the civil services, worked for the railroads as a Pullman porter or dining car waiter, or owned a small business.
    • 1989, United States Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs, U.S. Efforts to Commercialize Superconductivity: Hearing Before the Committee on Governmental Affairs, United States Government Printing Office, page 152,
      Vocational training reaches greater fractions of the labor force in nations like West Germany; large Japanese companies invest more heavily in job-related training for blue- and gray-collar employees than do American firms.