Employment Won't Increase until Economic Recovery Is Kickstarted

By Thomas Olson; Joe Napsha | Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 4, 2011 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Employment Won't Increase until Economic Recovery Is Kickstarted

Thomas Olson; Joe Napsha, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Candice Zawoiski of Friendship has searched for a teaching position for a year and hasn't found any kind of full-time job for two years.

"Because of all the budget cuts to education, I can't get a job," said Zawoiski, 32, who holds a master's degree in elementary education. "And I know I'm not the only one. It's a huge problem."

It's hardly limited to the education field or to the Pittsburgh region.

Policymakers are scrambling for ways to add jobs and energize the anemic economic recovery. President Obama is scheduled to lay out job-creating initiatives to a joint session of Congress on Thursday evening. Analysts expect he'll propose creating a fund for public works projects, extending payroll tax cuts beyond year-end, putting money toward worker retraining programs and providing temporary tax cuts to companies that hire people.

Yet hiring is not likely to pick up anytime soon, cautions Tom Henschke, president of SMC Business Councils in Churchill, a trade group that represents 1,500 small- and medium-sized firms in the region.

"The elements that need to exist just aren't present," Henschke said, citing slack demand for goods and services, tight credit and a lack of business and consumer confidence.

Experts say the main sources of new jobs in Western Pennsylvania are likely to be in the health care, education and natural gas industries and the spinoff jobs they bring in accounting, finance and information technology -- the same sources of most recent job growth here.

The nation has 6.8 million fewer jobs than when the Great Recession started in December 2007, according to the Economic Policy Institute in Washington. To keep up with growth in the working-age population since then, 4.3 million new jobs were needed. At that rate, it would take an average 400,000 new jobs per month to fill the gap by 2014.

On Friday, the government reported that zero jobs were created in August. It was the worst report in nearly a year, raising fears of another recession. The last one technically ended in June 2009.

"Unemployment has affected every group of workers," said institute President Lawrence Mishel. "Those with college degrees have double the unemployment rate, and young college grads are hurt the most."

"If Americans want to return to full employment, which means unemployment would be around 5 percent, then they'll have to wait until 2018 if employers are infused with a new confidence and began hiring at the same average rate they did during the 2003-2007 expansion -- 176,000 jobs a month. But 176,000 jobs a month is a far cry from the zero new jobs reported Friday," the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank in Washington, said in a statement.

Cenaya Crawford of the North Side got an associate's degree in business management four years ago but has searched fruitlessly for work since June. That's when she lost her job as a news store supervisor at Pittsburgh International Airport after the Hudson Group put her on weekends, when buses there run infrequently.

"I'm either too educated or not educated enough," said Crawford, 23. "I've been living off my savings, and my bank account is almost gone."

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office forecasts the nation's unemployment rate of 9.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this article

Cited article

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Employment Won't Increase until Economic Recovery Is Kickstarted


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?