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Woman holding sign saying I need a job.
Gawker's Hamilton Nolan is collecting first-hand stories of unemployment in a must-follow series. A veteran writes:
I also have to put down my medical history and my disability claims to justify my preferred hiring status (as a disabled vet). You can't tell me that they don't compare disabilities between candidates to determine which one is less likely to be annoying to deal with (I get seizures).

I find when dealing with civilians, I can't translate my experience very well. I also am not allowed to talk about what I did both with the Navy and the Army with any detail. I'm also 31. Its apparent in interviews when I am trying to land an entry level position. Add in that I don't have the experience with computers that most kids do (all the stuff I did in the Navy is analog and the Army job was just SQL).

A woman who has been lucky (her word) enough to get a good job after a year of unemployment writes:
I will say this: I have learned first hand how low income or hourly wage workers are made to feel on a regular basis. I am a white woman in her early 40s, went to Georgetown Law and own my own home, but none of that mattered last year. I could have been anyone in the grocery store trying to make her last $20 bill feed 3 kids for the next 5 days until her unemployment check arrived (which would be gone within hours - no joke). I was made to feel like absolute garbage when bringing my kids to their checkup and using AllKids coverage.
There's much more, including stories from someone about to run out of unemployment benefits, a woman with a restraining order against her ex-husband, and a 61 year old woman who thinks her age is a factor in her continuing unemployment.

A fair day's wage

  • Recycle and yard waste drivers in the Seattle area are on strike against Waste Management and have filed unfair labor practices complaints with the National Labor Relations Board, claiming that the company has been bargaining in bad faith, retaliating against drivers for their union activities, and more.
  • Unionized charter school teachers in New York are still fighting for a contract after two years.

State and local legislation

  • Oh, this is fantastic. Last year, the New Jersey legislature effectively cut the pay of state workers by raising their required contributions to health care and pensions. Now, the state Supreme Court has said that judges are exempt from those increased contributions, since it is effectively a pay cut and the state Constitution says sitting judges can't have their pay cut. And judges get to make that call for themselves, unlike janitors and teachers.
  • Pennsylvania's Republican governor and legislators keep wanting to add charter schools, even though the ones they have are insanely corrupt. Most recently, five charter school executives were charged by federal prosecutors with 62 counts including wire fraud, obstruction of justice, and witness tampering, related to their defrauding three charter schools of $6.5 million in public money.


  • On Tuesday, it was three years since the last time the minimum wage went up. Jon Soltz explains why a minimum wage increase would be important to veterans, and Bryce Covert looks at why it would be important to women.
  • The 401(k)-style, defined contribution retirement system has America on course for a major problem with elder poverty. Teresa Ghilarducci lays out some hard facts: You need to retire with 20 times your annual income saved, but 75 percent of Americans nearing retirement age in 2010 had less than $30,000. That means that "Almost half of middle-class workers, 49 percent, will be poor or near poor in retirement, living on a food budget of about $5 a day."
  • And this drought means that $5 won't go very far starting real soon. What food prices will go up because of the drought?

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 09:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by Income Inequality Kos and Unemployment Chronicles.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Thank You - N/T (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades, blueoregon

    "Upward, not Northward" - Flatland, by EA Abbott

    by linkage on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 09:43:44 AM PDT

  •  mothers of invention. (0+ / 0-)

    well, inventing a souffle covers about half of what's in my frig: the air part.

    Addington's Perpwalk: TRAILHEAD of Accountability for Bush-2 Crimes.
    * Join: OBAMA'S TRUTH TEAM *

    by greenbird on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 10:35:54 AM PDT

  •  Not trying to be critical in the least, but there (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    are other policies in Pennsylvania you could have brought up.

    General Assistance: temporary program for injured workers and those escaping domestic abuse to stay on their feet, eliminated completely

    SNAP eligibility: reinstating asset test before qualifying for food stamps (I have a blog from earlier in the year on that)

    Infrastructure: $80 million taken out of funding roads and bridges (jobs)

    All while spending hundreds of millions of dollars on NEW corporate tax cuts.

    Mere passive citizenship is not enough. Men must be aggressive for what is right if government is to be saved from those who are aggressive for what is wrong. - Fighting Bob La Follette

    by ProgressivePatriotPA on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 11:22:55 AM PDT

    •  IIRC I have discussed (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      both those things in PA specifically in the past.  Definitely included a link about general assistance pretty recently, and I think ... well, maybe Meteor Blades wrote about the SNAP asset test, not me, but I do remember discussing it with him and agreeing that we should write about it. In other words, absolutely there are lots of things to discuss about what Corbett and the legislature are doing there. This one caught my eye this week, but that doesn't mean I'm not paying attention to others.

  •  the untold story (0+ / 0-)

    I am still waiting for someone to tell the story/refute the evidence I have discovered, showing that the unemployed, especially those trying to survive on Emergency Unemployment Compensation, after their Regular State funds were exhausted, have been denied possibly Billions of Dollars in aid in every state for the past four years, due to errors and mistakes the Department of Labor published in the Implementing and Operating Instructions for this program (part of the ARRA). Struggling Workers and Families have been forced to accept much less EUC08 weekly benefit amounts, and gotten aid for much less time due to these serious errors that DO NOT comply with the Federal Administrative Law/Code of Federal Regulations for Extended Benefits (and EUC08).

    I have talk with and tried to assists dozens and dozens of the thousands upon thousands of claimants who have had to go through this hell, while trying to survive with much less aid, while the government tells them "TOO BAD THIS IS THE WAY WE SAY IT IS". Many tried to appeal and lost, because ALL Determinations, Payments and Adjudication source back to the same errors found in the "EUC08 Guidelines". I was the only person able to force the judges to look at the actual regulations found at 20 CFR 615. I won my appeal against this fraud on 10/20/11. California and the Feds have not been able to overturn this decision for the past six months +.

    The Department of Labor won't even address the clear evidence found at 20 CFR 615.5(2) nor my appeal case, recovery fraud complaint and pubic concerns based upon it. It says that the EUC Account is terminated with no entitlement to any remaining balance when they go back to work and become eligible for new a regular compensation again. The EUC Account should be based on this MOST RECENT Benefit Year, not an older remaining balance that is often for far less money per week. This is exactly how Regular Unemployment works...

    Nobody wants to hear it. Nobody wants to report it and NOBODY CAN REFUTE IT. The White House knows about this, they were informed by the DOL the DAY AFTER I WON MY APPEAL. ON 2/7/12, The DOL threatened the State of California with the loss of ALL EMERGENCY BENEFITS if my CUIAB Case A0-265448 was made a precedent. The Recovery Board, the DOL ETA and the DOL OIG are all refusing to follow up on my complaints and evidence. They will neither address it nor try to refute anything at all.

    If you want to know what it is like to walk around in a constant state of disbelief and shock, then just talk to me. Otherwise here is all the evidence you need to prove what I am saying:

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