Patrick J. Conway’s Oct. 26 Point of View “ The missing 300,000 workers” clearly addressed our unemployment situation, and his proposed solutions need serious consideration by the powers that be.
He said, “If an individual indicates that she is either employed or actively seeking employment, she is counted as part of the labor force. If she is not actively seeking employment, she is outside the labor force. The unemployment rate is the ratio of the number actively seeking employment to the total labor force. If someone is unemployed but stops looking for work, she is not included in the calculation of the unemployment rate.”
My question concerns “stops looking for work.” Example: Someone receives unemployment benefits and reports that he is looking for work. Thus, he is part of the labor force, according to the ESC records. However, when unemployment insurance ends, who tracks whether he continues to actively seek employment and where is that reported? Is he “unemployed and looking for work” only if he is included in the ESC reports?
If so, then isn’t cutting benefit duration an easy way for the state to look better, regardless of reality? Fewer people on the ESC records equals lower unemployment rate – true or not.