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What We're Reading Today: Tuesday News Roundup

Photo via Doviende/Flickr

Here are some headlines from the working families news we're reading today (after the jump).

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See Where the 1.3 Million People Losing Unemployment Aid Live

Map via Washington Post and the Committee on Ways and Means Democrats/Labor Department

The Washington Post and reporter Niraj Chokshi provide a sobering look at the 1.3 million people who lost emergency unemployment benefits last weekend when House Republicans left for the holiday break without renewing the aid for jobless workers. 

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Put a Stop to This: Bad Credit? No Job for You!

Put a Stop to This: Bad Credit? No Job for You!

Today’s jobless workers face new discriminatory barriers to finding work in a broken economy. Some employers won’t consider out-of-work applicants for job openings. And more and more employers run credit checks, leaving long-term jobless workers, who have likely fallen far behind in their bills and seen their credit scores tank, on the streets.

Today Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) introduced a bill to stop employers from requiring prospective employees to disclose their credit history or disqualifying applicants based on a poor credit rating.

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‘Jobless Need Not Apply’ Signs Coming Down in NYC

‘Jobless Need Not Apply’ Signs Coming Down in NYC

One of the ugliest side effects of the most severe economic downturn since the Great Depression is the continuing practice among many employers of refusing to consider applications of job seekers who are unemployed.  

But the New York City Council yesterday overwhelmingly (44-4) passed a bill that prohibits discrimination against the unemployed in hiring.

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Unemployment Is Still the Real Crisis

Photo courtesy of www.unemployedworkers.org, a project of the National Employment Law Project (NELP).

Paul Krugman reminds us in his New York Times column today that the real economic problem right now is a jobs crisis—not a deficit crisis. The unemployment rate may have dipped, but the number of jobless workers is more stubborn. So why aren’t pundits and the rest of the Inside-the-Beltway crew screaming about unemployment?

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States that Boost the Minimum Wage Have Less Job Loss in a Recession

NE min wage

A new study finds that when states raised the minimum wage in recent recessions, their economies suffered less job loss than those that did not (click on chart at left to expand).

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Pa. AFL-CIO Reaches Out to Help Jobless

The Pennsylvania AFL-CIO partnered with the United Way of Erie County last week to host an unemployment resources fair for jobless workers as part of Project Back on Track, a new program intended to help the unemployed. Pennsylvania AFL-CIO President Richard Bloomingdale says several more resource fairs are planned around the state.

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Older Workers Have Highest Long-Term Jobless Rate

Older workers who lose their jobs have the highest rate of long-term unemployment compared to any other age group. In 2011, more than half of jobless workers, ages 50 years and older, were out of work for more than six months. The trend continues this year. Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project (NELP), told the Senate Special Committee on Aging this afternoon:

The prospects are dim for older workers who lose their jobs.

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Ga. Anti-Free Speech Bill Dies; Attacks on Jobless Workers and Welfare Applicants Pass

The Republican-controlled Georgia state legislature ended its session. In a victory for working families—and for the Bill of Rights—the anti-free speech bill (S.B. 469), that brought union, faith and tea party activists together to protest the proposal to subject picketers to big fines, died. But not before lawmakers, in a last-ditch attempt to pass the bill in some form, stripped the picketing provisions and turned S.B. 469 into a purely anti-union bill that would affect dues deduction for public employees. But the bipartisan coalition opposed to the S.B. 469 held firm, and lawmakers decided not to take up the bill.

But the victory was bittersweet. Republicans still managed to pass bills that cut jobless benefits severely and require some welfare applicants to pass drug tests.

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The New American Economy: Win the Lottery, Get a Job

Stunning, just stunning. Nearly 17,000 people applied for jobs at a Ford plant in Kentucky, according to USA Today. The applications are now going into a lottery and Ford will determine who gets to proceed to be considered for the 1,800 jobs that pay $15.51 an hour.  No doubt not everyone who applied is unemployed, to be sure–but it’s likely a good number don’t have jobs.

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