The long-term unemployed can boost the economy, if you give them the necessary tools to do so. Give them seed money and they will have the necessary funds to pay the rent, buy groceries and pay the bills. By doing this, you are giving people a lifeline, a second chance. This seed money gives them a little peace of mind so they can get back on their feet and start looking for work rather than worrying about whether they will be able to pay the rent.

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This situation has crossed all economic, social, racial and political lines. Some have no more than a tenth grade education, others have a master’s degree or PhDs. Even as the economy slowly continues to recover, many Americans have not yet felt the effects of the country getting back on track and are still struggling to get by on a day-to-day basis. For the first time in Congress history, it has done something never done before: turn its back on the people.

The United States has become a nation of low-wage jobs, starting out at $8 dollars an hour. This is the going federal rate that companies must comply with. However, we have become a nation of part-time workers. The truth is that out of the roughly one million jobs created during 2013, only 23 percent were full-time jobs. 

Today in America only 47 per cent of adults have full-time jobs. Today, we have millions of people being pushed into being “involuntary part-time workers” – a new phrase that has been added to our lexicon. 

In January, Money Watch writer Neal Asbury made the claim in Money News that we are becoming a nation of part-timers, which should concern us all. Part-time workers are five times more likely to live in poverty. Many of these Americans want to work full time, but they end up having to take a job that’s half of their pay rate out of necessity, sometimes having to get a job that they did when they were in high school or putting themselves through college.

What kind of jobs should the unemployed apply for? The ones that graduated college and received Bachelor’s degrees, master’s degrees and PhDs should not be asked to apply for jobs that are low wage or unskilled. These people sacrificed a good portion of their lives to make something of themselves and should not be asked to move backwards instead of forwards.

The ones that have a high school diploma or GED should be provided with job training programs paid for by the government, to enter into trades such as welding, technician and baker. Our bridges and roads are in desperate need of repair: Americans out of work should be given the opportunity to work to repair our crumbling infrastructure.  

The President has tried to help and succeeded marginally, but America needs another Lyndon B Johnson or Franklin D Roosevelt. If Washington does not act in a timely and sufficient matter, there will soon be a revolution in the streets – and it will not be pretty. 

Theodore Knapinsky