Monday, December 28, 2009

Mass Movement Needed to Raise Wages, Create Good Jobs for All

Jobs Crisis
Public Employee Press, January 2010
District Council 37, AFSCME, AFL-CIO

With the unemployment rate at 10 percent, workers are growing increasingly anxious over the disappearance of secure jobs with decent wages and benefits.

“Good jobs are the central economic issue of our times,” said DC 37 Executive Director Lillian Roberts. “The high rate of unemployment is a wake-up call about the need to make the economy work better for ordinary people, not just the bankers and Wall Street elite.”

With a rebound of stock prices and modest economic growth, many mainstream economists are saying the Great Recession may be ending. But no recession is over until working people who want a job are back at work.

The jobs crisis facing our country is undeniable:

· one in five Americans is unemployed or underemployed, or has given up hope and stopped looking for work;
· only one job is available for every six Americans seeking work;
· unemployment now lasts for an average of six months, the longest since the 1930s, and
· when workers find a new job, it usually pays less than their old one.

Trade unionists, academics and religious and community activists gathered at the Interchurch Center on Riverside Drive Nov. 13 and at DC 37 Nov. 14 for a national conference on jobs. The National Jobs for All Coalition, a full-employment advocacy group, organized the conference with the support of DC 37 and other unions and organizations.

“...Change will not come about without a mass movement,” said Coalition Chair Gertrude Schaffner Goldberg, who heads the Ph.D. program in Social Work at Adelphi University.

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To sign on to the Jobs Conference revised Call to Action -- visit National Conference to Create Living Wage Jobs

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