Sobering

Record Long-Term Jobless Woes

For millions of people across the nation, it's ridiculously hard to find a job. In September, 35.6 percent of America's jobless had been unemployed for six months or longer—a record 5.4 million people. The longer these people remain out of work, USA Today writes, the harder it will be to get a job as skills fade and resume gaps widen. Many of the long-term unemployed, particularly the elderly, won't ever go back to work, or will have to accept pay cuts and lower-level jobs. Not to mention that the continuous need for aid is taxing the nation's social services and charities. Large numbers of long-term unemployed can reduce productivity and consumer spending even after economic recovery. Nationwide reluctance to hire until the economy is on firm footing has intensified the problem, as have low housing prices, which discourage the long-term unemployed from selling their homes and moving to areas with more jobs.