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Being Unemployed – The Nature of The Beast

Spencer Platt, Getty Images

Did you ever meet someone you knew was unemployed who seemed shiftless, lazy… did not seem to have much ambition for getting another job or keeping it? Have you ever come in contact with someone working in a job where they just do not seem to care about their job or what they do?

Where am I going with this? We have been seeing a troubling trend since the start of the great recession where certain companies or employers quietly adopt a policy of not even considering the unemployed for a new job. File this under the, “add insult to injury” category.

Some employers will justify this by saying when they bring a new member on to their team, they want them focused and energetic, not someone who is out of tune and out of touch because they have been out of work.

But that kind of stereotyping ignores a common fact. Just like many other things in life, the unemployed are a mixed bag. Sure it is true some may be lazy and content to collect unemployment benefits. But the fact of the matter is, most jobless people I have seen who lost their job through no faut of their own are more than ready, willing and able to do whatever they have to to get and hold another position.

And as I said before, we all encounter people who are doing a horrible job and they are still employed and there’s no blanket indictment about the rest of us in the workforce. So why the blanket indictment of those trying to reenter it?

I am close to someone who lost a good job because their firm collapsed in the economic downturn, no fault of theirs. This person does not lack energy or the will to work. They simply need a job. What they do not need is prospective employers writing them off before thay have a chance to make their case for getting hired.

A growing number of States are cracking down on this nonsense and they should. California is the latest. We should be judging people by their ability to execute and function in a job, based on their education and experience and not some cruel twist of fate that finds them on the outside looking in, with the gatekeeper sneering at their plight.

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