The reason I say “working” families is because this economy is much more
complicated than “working” and “unemployed.” There are many families like ours,
struggling, even though we both technically have jobs. We are both in our 50s, have
no retirement savings and are living paycheck to paycheck.
A year ago, my husband who was our family’s main breadwinner lost his job at a
manufacturing plant. This is an industry that has been hammered in the present
Thanks to the extension of unemployment insurance a year ago, my husband was
able to continue to pay the bills for a while longer. Then he took a job at another
plant that, unfortunately, pays less than half of his previous position. There are
many workers like him.
Even when times are tough, we try to count our blessings. We are fortunate to
have health insurance through our jobs and I am lucky to work for a company
that has allowed me to work extra hours for more pay. I am also allowed a flexible
schedule when a family emergency arises. Both my daughter, who has debilitating
neuropathy, and my mother-in-law, who has Alzheimer’s disease, live with us. It’s
That’s why it is important that we not forget about our workers, especially this
holiday season. Making sure that workers have unemployment insurance while they
are looking for a job is the least we can do for hardworking families and will
help stimulate our economy for everyone.
Elisanta “Lisa” Batista is the salad bar clerk at the Shaw’s Supermarket in Derry,
New Hampshire. She has been named Associate of the Year by her co-workers and won
the Regional Associate of the Year for her district in New Hampshire. She is also a wife,
mother to four children, including MomsRising outreach specialist Elisa Batista, and
grandmother to two children.
This blogpost is part of the #HERvotes blog carnival.