|While the jobs crises has been disasterous for working America, for children it has been catastrophic. As the Economic Policy Institute shows us unemployed or underemployed parents are creating millions of new children dependent on workers who are not working, or not working enough:
Today's persistently high unemployment rate affects not only those who have lost or are without jobs but also their family members, including their children. The figure shows that the share of children living with an unemployed or underemployed parent rose from 9.1 percent (6.4 million) in 2007 to 18.3 percent (13.0 million) in 2010. One in four children in black and Hispanic families had an unemployed or underemployed parent in 2010.
This chart illustrates how these children have more than doubled:
In fact, as a whole when these numbers are considered children have a higher unemployment and underemployment rate than their parents:
One takeaway from this analysis is that children experience a higher "unemployment rate" than that confronting the average worker. In 2010, when the national unemployment rate was 9.6 percent, 10.6 percent of children had an unemployed parent. Similarly, 18.3 percent of children had an under- or unemployed parent, which exceeded the national underemployment rate of 16.8 percent.
Because of this our nation's children as a whole took another hit. Poverty among children continues to rise right along with their parents also as the U.S. Census Bureau has reported:
The poverty rate increased for children younger than 18 (from 20.7 percent in 2009 to 22.0 percent in 2010) and people 18 to 64 (from 12.9 percent in 2009 to 13.7 percent in 2010), while it was not statistically different for people 65 and older (9.0 percent).
Similar to the patterns observed for the poverty rate in 2010, the number of people in poverty increased for children younger than 18 (15.5 million in 2009 to 16.4 million in 2010) and people 18 to 64 (24.7 million in 2009 to 26.3 million in 2010) and was not statistically different for people 65 and older (3.5 million).
Which really begs the question of all of us. What kind of country are we leaving the next generation? How will our children not only live the American dream but just find a way to get by? For the better part of thirty years we have allowed the top few in society to steal their futures and horde our country's wealth all while depressing wages and destroying the middle-class. How will our children in working America ever see wages that will build them wealth??
When will America be fed up?? Not only are we allowing politicians to destroy opportunity for the young but we are now hearing them talk about stealing their Social Security and any social safety net they may ever have. For what?? More profits and tax cuts for those who could never come close to spending what they already have.
That is why we not only need to support the measures taken by President Obama in his jobs bill, plus go further. Working Americans have been squeezed so long now damage control simply is not enough to bring them back. We need to go further and not only stop the bleeding but bring some of the wealth back to more Americans.
The Congressional Progressive Caucus has tried to do just that. They see the need to go further and really invest in our people and country:
The Progressive Caucus plan offers additional stimulus measures beyond those in the president's bill. It has several key tenets: the revival of American manufacturing, creation of a national infrastructure bank, jobs for youth, green industry development, support for labor organizing and higher taxes on wealthy individuals and corporations.
"We think [Obama's bill] is a wonderful first step. We'd like to strengthen it and make it bigger," said caucus Co-Chairman Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.).
Part of the Progressive Caucus plan is incorporated in the Emergency Jobs to Restore the American Dream Act, a bill sponsored by Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.). That bill, set to be formally introduced in the House on Tuesday, would create more than 2 million jobs, paid for with higher taxes on millionaires and billionaires, Schakowsky said.
Many of those jobs would be in the construction sector, with an estimated 650,000 jobs created in constructing and maintaining schools, according to Schakowsky's office. The bill would also make possible 100,000 jobs for youth, 250,000 work-study jobs for students and direct funding to hire and rehire 300,000 teachers.
And that is the problem. That is why Republicans will not allow it and Democrats will not fight for it. It does what needs to be done and invests in who should be invested in both now and for the future. Working America simply does not have the money to fix the problems caused by the greediest and least patriotic among us as they horded the money and now they need to clean up their own mess and give back.
If average Americans will not fight back for their own children then I do not know what will make them care.