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Job Report Highlights Points of Pain as US Economy Struggles to Recover

January 8, 2010

NEW YORK (January 8, 2010)--As the Rainbow PUSH Coalition prepares for its January 13-15 Wall Street Economic Summit in New York, Reverend Jesse Jackson commented on today’s jobs report.

“Today we find that 85,000 jobs were lost in December 2009, a reversal from the 4,000 job gain in November. While the banks have been bailed-out and the Dow soars over 10,000, working families still find themselves in the zones of pain. Real unemployment now stands at some 17%. Nine million Americans are presently part time because their hours were cut. Again in December we saw an increase in people dropping out of the labor force.

Disparities abound: 11 million African Americans are out of work – an astounding 48%. These are Great Depression numbers, suggesting that things don’t always just get better from here, they also get worse. Blacks have suffered the largest loss of personal/family wealth in their history.

Since 2007, we have seen the largest percentage rise in unemployment since the Second World War and the largest loss of jobs as a percentage of the labor force since the end of WWII. Behind the headlines numbers are a growing and disturbing number of long-term unemployed, out of work for more than half a year. 6.1 million Americans, nearly 40% of our unemployed, have been out of work for more than 27 weeks.

This recession has hit men and the young very hard. Male unemployment is over 10.2%. Teenage Unemployment is over 27%. In December 2009 the African American unemployment rate rose to 16.2%. Unevenly distributed unemployment will have particular and particularly important social implications.”

The Rainbow PUSH Wall Street Economic Summit will take place at the New York Sheraton Hotel and Towers, January 13-15, focusing on the demand for a Stimulus II to target resources to those most in need, and to launch a new campaign to restructure loans and not foreclosure on homes. For more information about the conference, please contact 212-425-7874, www.rainbowpush.org.

The Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a progressive organization protecting, defending and expanding civil rights to improve economic and educational opportunity. The organization is headquartered at 930 E. 50th St. in Chicago. For more information about the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, please visit www.rainbowpush.org or call (773) 373-3366.