Katie LaPotin, Red Alert Politics, February 1, 2013
Looks like Millennials will continue to be in for a bumpy ride in 2013.
The latest jobs report from Generation Opportunity, a “nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that seeks to educate and organize young Americans on the challenges facing our nation,” found that unemployment among those aged 18-29 years old rose by more than 1.5 percent in January to 13.1 percent.
Unemployment among Millennials since 2008 is at the highest sustained level it has been at since World War II.
Earlier this morning the Bureau of Labor Statistics released its January jobs report, which found that unemployment increased nationally by one-tenth of a percent to 7.9 percent while adding 157,000 jobs to the workforce. The U-6 rate, the Department of Labor’s broadest measure of calculated unemployment, remained unchanged at 14.4 percent.
While unemployment among African-Americans aged 18-29 remained steady at a whopping 22.1 percent, Millennial Hispanics and women were the most affected by the jump. The unemployment rate among Hispanics went up nearly a full percentage point to 13 percent, and among women it went up 1.2 percent to 11.6 percent.
These numbers are non-seasonally adjusted, which means that they include the impact of holiday retail jobs from December, making the numbers “artificially low” according to Generation Opportunity spokesman David Pasch.
The fact that the declining labor participation among young adults not counted as “unemployed” grew by another 1.7 million jobs is also worrisome. Included in this group are Millennials who have given up looking for work because of the lack of available jobs in their chosen field.
“President Obama says America should be ‘investing in the generation that will build its future,’ yet four years of his government-driven economic policies have left us with record youth unemployment and an economy that is literally shrinking. My generation is suffering disproportionately,” said Terence Grado, Director of National and State Policy at Generation Opportunity.
“Instead of staying the course and doubling down on failure, we need a new strategy that encourages the private sector to grow, invest, and provide real opportunities for the millions of young people who have great skills, are ready to contribute, and have waited long enough.”
Pasch added that the current unemployment situation is “unacceptable for people our age,” and that the responsibility and blame for the high unemployment numbers rests with elected leaders in Washington, including President Obama.
He also noted that Obama’s share of the youth vote in 2012 decreased by 11 percent, signifying a shift in opinion of the president among this group of voters.