August 7th, 2012
The long-term unemployed are not a protected class in the United States. In September, 2011, the President proposed legislation that would make it unlawful to refuse to hire applicants solely because they are unemployed, but that legislation has not passed.
Long-term unemployment is a serious issues…no one is denying this. One of the characteristics of the Great Recession (December 2007 to June 2009) has been the unprecedented rise in long-term unemployment. In July 2012, there were 5.2 million long-term unemployed people in the United States*, accounting for 40.7% of all the unemployed. (Source: BLS, 8/3/2012)
*NOTE: Compared to 1.3 million in July 2007.
Even though employers are hiring new workers, the fact remains that those who have been unemployed the longest may be some of the last to be hired. Currently, except for several high-skilled areas, employers have a large pool of labor from which to hire full-time workers.
It is possible to jump back into the workforce after a prolonged absence (for whatever reason…unemployment, furthering education, providing care for children and/or aging relatives, etc); it just might take a lot longer.
In many ways, you are fighting a battle of perceptions. …Continue Reading!