Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Young Adults Without Jobs, Without Hope

A recent article on Huffington Post--"Millennial Unemployment: 2013 Outlook Grim According to Recent Jobs Report"--reports that "The overall unemployment rate for 18 to 29-year olds in December was 11.5 percent, according to the national, non-partisan organization Generation Opportunity, which analyzes the data specifically for that age range."  Additionally, it is highlighted that this does not include about 1.7 million young adults who have given up looking for work altogether, which pushes the rate up to about 16.3%.

The Annie E. Casey Foundation recently reported that there are about 6.5 million Americans between the ages of 16 and 25 who are neither in school nor working (see article here).

If we keep excluding millions of young Americans from the labor market, and millions are idle, what does this mean for their dignity and their hope?  What does it mean for our economy?  How will it impact our already world-leading incarceration rate?

Do we even care?  As our leaders discuss trillion dollar coins, fiscal cliffs, and debt ceilings, what is to become of young people who simply want a job, and some hope that one day they can have a decent middle-class life?

Where is the Civilian Conservation Corps and the National Youth Administration, to help young adults get a start?

We say, "United We Stand."  But do we mean it?

(Image above is a WPA poster, provided courtesy of the Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division)

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