Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Helping or Hurting

2 Million people loosing extended unemployment as the holiday hits. This sounds horrible and, it is. But we have to ask what is happening to keep people from being able to find any job? From the information I could find people can get a total of 99 weeks of unemployment in VA. So these people who are going to be losing their jobs have been looking for a job for almost 2 years. Or have they? The article states that the average unemployment benefit is a little over $300 a week. Unemployment specifically allows jobs to be turned down that will not allow the recipient to make a certain percentage of what they were making. When I lived in Texas, I worked with multiple construction workers whose goal was to work as hard and as often as possible to get great wages. This seems commendable. However, the motivation was not so much for the wages in the short term but the potential earnings when laid off. It was a celebration for many of them because they would still get paid 75% of what they were making with the expenditure of only an hour or two job searching a week. I have recently talked with a couple of frustrated business owners because people will come in "looking for jobs" but they will turn it down when offered the job. I was unemployed for 3 months after being laid of from a good job. During this time it drove me nuts not having a job. I finally ended up getting a job that paid $8 an hour. By working the entire week I made an additional $40 dollars than just sitting at the house. The reason people do not have jobs is not because they are not out there. The issue is they do not want to settle for a job that ends up paying less than they are comfortable making. Minimum wage pays $290 for a 40 hour week, less than the unemployment average. Problem is with employers long lapses of employment causes suspicion, after all why have they been out of work for so long. Lack of work causes either shame or laziness depending on reasons for lack of work. Even getting a job at a fast food chain will help raise the possibility of getting a better job somewhere else because future employers will realize that this person is hungry for a good job and is willing to work. I believe we are doing a disservice to Americans when we enable them to embrace a lifestyle that makes them dependent on the government other than themselves. This is not to say that there is not the occasional person that is legitimately trying even for a minimum wage job. Unfortunately, that person is in the minority, and that is the person that would be the perfect hire because of dedication and work ethic.

1 comment:

  1. I often wonder the same thing. I know I had a period of time when I did not have a job and I was all over Lynchburg looking for a job until I found one. Our generation has become numb and are used to having things handed to them on a platter. I always want to show these people the love of Christ and by them a meal, but I would never give them money just for the fact of what they could spend it on.


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