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University of Wisconsin–Madison
Poverty-related issues in the news, from the Institute for Research on Poverty

Tag: Long-term unemployment

Long-Term Unemployment

Over 50, female and jobless even as others return to work, By Patricia Cohen, January 1, 2016, New York Times: “The latest signs of an improving economy were good enough to help persuade the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade. But the better job market is not good enough to land Chettie McAfee a job.  Laid off at the start of the recession from the diagnostic testing firm in Seattle where she spent more than three decades, Ms. McAfee, 58, has not worked since 2007. ‘I’ve been applying and applying and applying,’ said Ms. McAfee, who has relied on her savings and family to get by as she fights off attempts to foreclose on her home. At interviews, she said, ‘They ask, ‘Why has it been so long?’’   At 5 percent, the jobless rate may be close to what economists consider full employment, but that headline figure doesn’t capture the challenges still facing millions of Americans who have yet to regain their footing in the workplace…”

Long-Term Unemployment

  • 40 percent of unemployed have stopped looking for work: Harris Poll, By Olivera Perkins, May 20, 2015, Cleveland Plain Dealer: “Forty percent of the unemployed have given up looking for work, according to a Harris Poll released Wednesday. The poll, ‘The State of the Unemployed,’ was done for the Oklahoma City-based Express Employment Professionals. The national staffing company has 25 offices in Ohio. The survey takes a close look at the jobless in a time when unemployment rates are falling. This is the second year the company has conducted such a poll. Last year, 47 percent of people without jobs had given up looking. Robert Funk, the company’s CEO and a former chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, said the number is still too high, especially since the nation’s unemployment rate for April was 5.4 percent, down 0.8 of a percentage point from the year before…”
  • Many jobless (still) giving up looking for work, By Jeff Cox, May 21, 2015, NBC News: “About 40 percent of the 8.5 million jobless Americans have given up looking for work altogether. The revelation, contained in a new survey Wednesday showing how much work needs to be done yet in the U.S. labor market, comes as the labor force participation rate remains mired near 37-year lows. A tight jobs market, the skills gap between what employers want and what prospective employees have to offer, and a benefits program that, while curtailed from its recession level, still remains obliging have combined to keep workers on the sidelines, according to a Harris poll of 1,553 working-age Americans conducted for Express Employment Professionals…”

Long-Term Unemployment – New Jersey

Forever unemployed: Why N.J.’s long-term jobless rate remains among highest in U.S., By Erin O’Neill, April 5, 2015, Star-Ledger: “Alain Chahine lost his job two years ago. Since then, he said, he has completed more than 600 applications and sent 200 messages to his network looking for leads. Those efforts produced 18 interviews in 2013, 35 more in 2014 and 12 so far this year, Chahine said. But the number of full-time job offers to date? Zero.  ‘There’s nothing funny about the job search process,’ said the 57-year-old northern New Jersey resident. ‘You’re at the mercy of the process itself and that’s the frustrating part.’  Federal jobs reports point to a rebounding labor market, though the unemployment rate remained at 5.5 percent in March. But the percentage of jobless residents out of work 27 weeks or more remains historically high…”