Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Long Term Unemployed

There is a growing problem not only in NY but nationwide as well. And that is there is a growing population of those that are long term unemployed and the underemployed. By long term unemployed we are talking about those who have been unemployed for a year or more and are no longer collecting unemployment insurance. And for those who are underemployed are people who wind up having to work for minimum to next to minimum wage.

Seeing how this is ever growing after attending numerous workshops here on Long Island such as LISENG, Career Directions Job Club, Sid Jacobson JCC, Maria Frye Boot Camp and others, I have learned first hand how many people that fit in the above categories. A computer programmer having to settle for driving a school bus after he lost his job; an accountant being a funeral home greeter; a MBA working as a receptionist for a doctor; a funeral director of 30 years experience having to stock shelves at Home Depot; a system administrator being unemployed for over 6 years and not being able to find work; a news research analyst being out of work for 5 years and is still looking. All of these people lost their jobs and either wind up working way below their skill sets or not being able to find work at all.

I devised a plan in what could be done to help these people and more and presented it to various NY legislators.

The plan is simple but needs someone with the fortitude to carry it out. This is just some ideas –

1 – Figure out why a person’s resume is not working and see what can be done to correct it.

2 – When a person sends out their resume to a company and do not hear back, the program needs to be able to contact that company to find out why the person was never contacted and make corrections to the person’s resume and cover letter for the next company.

3 – If a person has and interview and does not receive an offer, the program needs to be able to reach out to the company to find out why the person was not selected so corrections could be made for the next interview.

4 – Provide free to low cost training to gain new skills or enhance what they already have.

5 – Work with the person’s creditors to protect the person’s credit standing and to prevent eviction or foreclosure.

6 – Partner with employers who will provide jobs for those who are long term unemployed or underemployed. You could be surprised at the skills they might have which no resume can reflect. This holds especially true for those over 50. They seem to be the hardest hit.

Right now nothing like this exists especially with points 2, 3, 5 and 6.

My inquires and emails to my legislators have gone unanswered. Based on the lack of responses our legislators do not seem to care about the long term unemployed or underemployed.

Former NY Governor Andrew Cuomo was is no fan of the unemployed by a long shot. He slashed benefits in 2012 for those on UI. According to the NYS Department of Labor in Hicksville, NY, there was a bill that would allow long term unemployed workers to collect additional unemployment benefits. Cuomo refused to sign it and was successful in killing the bill. In 2015 he was the first governor to head to Cuba to see about offshoring more NY and American jobs putting more people out of work. In August 2018 he made the comment that America was never that great.

With unemployment higher that ever, not one person in elected office has made any effort to help those who are long term unemployed. They feel that those people who are long term unemployed or under employed simply do not exist.

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