Demands to address the country’s jobs crisis are accelerating with the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) joining a growing number of groups calling for federal action. The CBC will be hosting a “For the People Jobs Initiative” in several urban areas stricken by high unemployment.
The first stop will be Chicago and will be hosted by Congressman Danny Davis. The date has not yet been announced.
According to The Root, the tour will take the form of a jobs fair along with town hall meetings to focus attention on the challenges faced by job seekers.
The Congressional Progressive Caucus along with labor groups is also sponsoring public hearings this summer in an effort to help shape the public debate.
Republicans in Congress turned a deaf ear to jobs legislation even before winning a majority in last fall’s election. The tea party majority faction instead is fixated on cutting government spending and preventing corporate tax increases.
With African American unemployment twice the national average, the Black Caucus thinks that immediate steps must be taken. The jobs fair component of their For the People Jobs Initiative is aimed at addressing this concern.
In addition, the CBC has met with President Obama and presented his administration with job creation proposals for particularly hard-hit areas with monies already allocated by the federal government.
CBC head Emanuel Cleaver, D-Mo., in an interview with The Root, said, “We did present the president with a plan that would allow federal funds to go in larger amounts to areas where we’ve had persistent poverty and unemployment. The plan called on the government to use existing federal dollars so that there would not be the need for one penny to be appropriated above what we’ve already approved.”
The Obama administration has looked at job-creating measures aimed at small businesses.
The 2 million jobs created over the past two years claimed by the administration can scarcely keep pace with 25 million needed to return to pre-recession levels. Unemployment has remained stubbornly high and now is once again over 9 percent.
The next speakout organized by the Congressional Progressive Caucus will be July 16 at Miami Dade College. This will be followed on July 18 by a speakout in Pittsburgh.