I recently watched a movie about a boy who was on a ship that started to sink. Luckily for him, there was a lifeboat he could scramble onto; otherwise, he would have drowned. But what do you do when you’re on a sinking ship—and there is no lifeboat?
Unemployment insurance benefits have been a lifeboat for millions of families in an economy that often feels like it’s sinking fast. Rather than extend these benefits, House Republicans made the choice to jump ship and go on holiday break, letting these vital benefits expire for our neighbors, friends and family members who have lost their jobs. We can’t just watch from afar while fellow Americans struggle to stay afloat. We have to get them that lifeboat.
I’ve been unemployed. And I can tell you from experience, the bills don’t stop just because you’re not getting a regular paycheck. These benefits make sure job seekers can keep the lights on and, just like a lifeboat, keep them afloat until they find employment.
Our job market still is bearing the weight of the Wall Street-induced financial meltdown. We’ve seen workers losing their jobs across the board—from health care and education to construction and government—through no fault of their own. These are the men and women who make America work and now they’re drowning. Shouldn’t we give them that lifeboat?
Sign the petition to extend unemployment benefits for our job-seeking neighbors here:
Digital Strategist, AFL-CIO