I’ve been working for a living since 1971, and I’ve always been able to get a job in a matter of days. Not so today. Since being laid off in late 2008, I’ve applied and applied, to no avail.
I told a friend, “It’s a good thing I have hobbies that pay: writing and painting. I’ve always written for companies and for publication while holding down a full-time job. I’ve always painted and hung art showings every one to two years.
It’s a good thing for me, but everyone is not so fortunate. I see on the news and witness around me, the horrible toll unemployment exacts from those who have nothing to fall back on.
The most recent passage of HR 4213 – Unemployment Compensation Extension Act will help some of them, but not those who have exceeded 99 weeks. This is the much ignored 5th Tier that was not added to the current bill and is not a front-of-mind for our legislators.
“…even the most active members of Congress on the unemployment issue say there will be no bill to help 99-ers by adding a fifth tier of benefits…”
What are these Americans to do? They have exceeded or will soon exceed 99 weeks of unemployment compensation, and are not considered as viable candidates for hire because of their unemployed status.
What can we do.
- If you work for and/or make the policy that excludes people ready, willing and able to work because they are ‘unemployed’, STOP IT!
- If you are an agency and are asked to discriminate against unemployed citizens, report that discrimination.
- The rest of us need to rabble rouse: Blog it; Tweet it; deluge the White House, Senate and Congress with e-mails, letters, petitions in support of extending HR 4213 to Tier 5 and looking into the discriminatory hiring practices of U.S. companies.
- Here is a current circulating Petition.