Job Growth Weakened in September

Private sector job growth at slowest pace in more than four years.

Private sector job growth at slowest pace in more than four years.   The Labor Department reported the economy created just 142,000 jobs in September, well below most forecasts. Furthermore, the prior two months’ numbers were revised down as well, bringing the average for the last three months to 167,000. In addition, there was a drop in the length of the average workweek of 0.1 hour causing the index of aggregate hours to decline by 0.2 percent. The household survey also showed a weak picture of the labor market. While the unemployment rate was unchanged at 5.1 percent there was […]

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Poverty is not Inevitable: What we can do–NOW!

Looking for change. Changing poverty now.

Inequality and poverty are suddenly hot topics, not only in the United States but also across the globe. Since the early 1980s, there has been a growing underclass in America. At the same time a much smaller class, now called the superrich, built its wealth to levels of opulence not seen since France’s Louis XVI. Despite this, the resulting inequality went mostly unnoticed. When the Great Recession of 2008 hit, and the division between the very wealthy and the rest of us came starkly into focus, various people and groups, including the Occupy movement, began insisting more publicly that we […]

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Blue-Collar Temp Workers face a Modern “Harvest of Shame”

Work Gloves

This story was done in collaboration with VICE News. Watch the series. CRANBURY, N.J. — Half a century ago, the legendary journalist Edward R. Murrow came to this pancake-flat town in central New Jersey to document the plight of migrant farmworkers for a television special called “Harvest of Shame.” Today, many of Cranbury’s potato fields have been built up with giant warehouses that form a distribution hub off Exit 8A of the Jersey Turnpike. But amid this 21st century system of commerce, an old way of labor persists. Temporary workers make a daily migration on buses to this area, just […]

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Devaluing Work and Workers

(Photo via Fight for 15)

The Great Recession leveled a blow to the middle and working classes from which they haven’t yet recovered. Given that labor’s pay and prestige in America peaked in the 1960s, this isn’t exactly new. Still, it’s time that all our leaders took this challenge more seriously. After all, we don’t just have the rich getting richer while the poor get poorer anymore. The middle is collapsing. Between 2000 and 2011, the U.S. economy, at least as Wall Street and the federal government measure it, grew nearly 20 percent after adjusting for inflation. Meanwhile, median income in working-age American households sank by 12.4 percent and had […]

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