America’s Moms Urge Congress, ‘Extend Unemployment Insurance, NOT Tax Cuts for the Wealthy’
December 1, 2010
MomsRising Joins Labor Groups in Delivering Petitions to Congress
My husband lost his job in the winter of 2009. He had been collecting unemployment benefits since then, until Friday, June 24, 2010. He has applied for jobs everywhere, but has not gotten any call backs. He has been told by a few places that he was OVER QUALIFIED, for a few jobs.
- Autumn, West Virginia
I have been out of work since January 2009, I have gone to school during this time and now actively seeking work. The interviews I go on the employers/companies say that they receive 125 – 200 resumes for this position.
- Theresa, Ohio
I was laid-off a year ago from the financial industry. I have applied for over 1,100 jobs, networked my butt off, paid for professional resume and coaching services, returned to school, but have only netted a few interviews and no job offers. My savings are long gone. With no children to support, I do not qualify for assistance from any public or private programs which are cash-strapped or broke as well. I haven't had health insurance in over a year and cannot afford the extremely expensive medications and doctors care that I need to treat my rheumatoid arthritis. I am scraping by on the pittance from unemployment insurance. When it ends I will be evicted from my apartment with no place to go and no place to store the remnants of my formerly contented life.
- Anonymous, Illinois
These are just a few of the stories of the struggles of everyday Americans who are trying to survive the worst recession since the 1930’s. These and the stories of seven other people were included in booklets that MomsRising delivered to Members of Congress today. MomsRising is an online and on-the-ground organization with more than one million members advocating for public policies that improve the lives of America’s families and help ensure family economic security.
The organization gathered these and hundreds of other stories on its web site and the book delivery is a part of MomsRising’s effort to urge Congress to extend unemployment insurance, rather than the Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthy.
“Moms are good at sniffing out trickery,” said MomsRising Executive Director Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner. “We've detected green beans stuffed in napkins, ratted out feigned illnesses with our trusty thermometers, and we're pretty sure the dog didn't eat that missing homework. So, when some of our elected leaders tell us that they can afford to extend tax cuts for the rich, but can't afford to continue unemployment benefits for our millions of families searching for work, we're a bit suspicious. According to most estimates, extending the Bush tax cuts for millionaires would increase the deficit by an estimated 700 billion dollars over the next ten years, but keeping the emergency federal unemployment benefits programs in place for another year for the millions of families who are still desperately looking for work would cost only a small fraction of that. The choice seems obvious.”
The stories were delivered with green beans wrapped in napkins.
Prior to the story delivery, MomsRising representatives joined the AFL-CIO, National Employment Law Project, US Action, Color of Change and Working America to deliver to members of Congress petitions with more than 100,000 signatures calling for a one-year emergency extension of unemployment insurance.
Last month, MomsRising organized a blog carnival on unemployment insurance, which featured blog posts from across the country highlighting the need to extend unemployment insurance for millions of families whose breadwinners are out of work.