The worst financial recession since the great depression has resulted in mass unemployment across the United States. The pain is being felt now in the poorest regions of the country, struggling even prior to the latest recession and even after several years of steady but unequal economic growth. The first and best opportunity to prevent mass layoffs from occurring is to maintain the statistical normalcy of employment levels for at least the next two years, through a coordinated series of targeted quarantine and tests such as those implemented by many major corporations. If these tests fail, the only other course remains open is mass retraining or layoff. However, how can large corporations affect the economy?
Large corporations have been hesitant to retrain or hire those whose job is on the line, due to the fact that such high profile employees are also their best source of revenue. Therefore, retraining without compensation may provide small businesses with the financial cushion they need in order to weather the storm of mass layoffs. This is the best opportunity offered by the current administration to protect American consumers from further erosion of living standards caused by the recession.
Most public officials are quick to call for the unemployed to return to work. But, if this mass unemployment persists, the authorities are faced with a serious credibility issue. The mass unemployment creates an enormous challenge for public officials to overcome. In order to protect the credibility of emergency committees, which are designed to coordinate relief efforts among large and small employers, the administration should establish a coordinated program to assist unemployed workers return to work.
One of the immediate steps that should be taken is to create designated agencies in each state to coordinate the distribution of unemployment insurance benefits. Emergency committees can be instructed to communicate directly with these unemployed workers and provide assistance in overcoming the economic downturns. State and local governments must work closely with the United States Department of Labor to ensure unemployed citizens receive all the assistance available under the unemployment act. State and local economic development agencies and private companies should be encouraged to participate in the distribution of unemployment benefits for mass unemployment in order to secure the most benefit at the most competitive price for the state.
The crisis is not going to be resolved overnight. In fact, the economic crisis is predicted to last at least until the end of this year. If no action is taken to remedy the mass unemployment rate, the crisis is likely to continue to worsen. Millions of Americans could soon find themselves struggling to survive on unemployment pay. A coordinated effort by government agencies and private employers to alleviate the crisis is needed now, before millions more fall behind on paydays.
Businesses must recognize the importance of contingency plans for mass unemployment in order to remain solvent. A contingency plan is an organized plan for addressing a problem before it occurs. Emergency situations often lead to long-term consequences for business. Unemployment is not an emergency in America. However, millions of American citizens are suffering the consequences of an unemployment crisis that will not go away.
Many local governments have already implemented measures to provide assistance to those who are struggling to meet their financial obligations. Several large cities, such as Detroit and St. Louis, have already implemented plans to help those forced into joblessness meet essential expenses. Recently, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie announced a plan for municipalities along the New Jersey coastline to provide jobs to unemployed families. The state of Georgia is also providing financial aid to business owners in the coastal area of coastal Georgia.
President Barack Obama has also made creating a more competitive work environment his top priority. Recently, labor unions filed a lawsuit against the federal government, claiming the federal government is not meeting its legal responsibilities in regards to maintaining unemployment insurance benefits for its workers. In addition, public officials in several major cities have threatened to withhold pension payments to police officers who have been terminated for punching suspects in an attempt to bring down crime levels. At the same time, state and local officials have been using local tax increases and increasing taxes on corporations, which are leaving little money for the city and towns. All these actions by public officials are having a devastating effect on the American economy, which is in a severe economic downturn.