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The impact of unemployment on social issues

In this essay I would like to consider the impact of unemployment on social issues and recommend solutions to this actual problem. To begin with it can be said that unemployment has significant impact on social issues. Obviously, majority of the population in the United States earn their living by working for somebody and a lot of families in our country depend on the salary. Everybody have to pay bills, credits and so on. In other words, most of our citizens depend on their work, because they have to earn money. First of all, unemployment rate indicates on state of the economy of the country and its effectiveness. As a fact, unemployment rate is very important indicator and has influence on currency rate. It can be said that if the country has high unemployment rate – the government carries a poor management. Consequently, the more people become unemployed – the more intensified social tensions in the society are. It should be noted that this indicator has enormous impact on social stability in our country and in the worse case can lead us to the revolution. Taking into account mentioned above I would like to say that unemployment has enormous impact on social issues, and this is the main reason why I have chosen this topic.

It should be noted that high level of unemployment leads to increased social tensions in the U.S., as well as to a range of social problems, among them are: the problem of poverty; the racial problem; the problem of crime; the problem of alcoholism; the housing problem. Further, I would like to review each of these problems in detail, according to Bijou Yang, David Lester (2010).

The problem of poverty in the U.S. Without any doubts, mass unemployment leads our citizens to poverty. As a fact, in the U.S. a person is considered poor when his officially annual income does not exceed the poverty line. It is determined on the base of the cost of goods and services, which are required to meet the most basic subsistence needs. Today, income of over a third of the poor citizens in the U.S. represents less than 50 percent of people who are under “poverty line”. Moreover, the majority of the poor of the U.S. population nowadays consists of women and children. 

According to Esmé E. Deprez (2009), it can be said that the racial problem in the U.S. is one of the most pressing domestic social problems the country. Despite the proclamation of the equal rights of American citizens, the United States still remains a country of racial inequality and discrimination. Often, we have a situation, when a person can not get a job, because he is not “white”. As a fact, the persistence of discrimination in hiring and firing indicates irreducible gap between white and colored Americans. In my opinion, racial-ethnic groups are systematically discriminated in salary and education fields. Moreover, the broad masses of African-Americans have virtually no access to quality health care.

The next is the problem of crime in the U.S. In recent decades, crimes in the U.S. have more open, widespread and severe forms. It should be noted that unemployment leads to enhanced growth rates of crime and increasing involvement of youth in this sphere, the concentration of crime in cities and industrial centers. Also, the problem of crime in the U.S. has following outcome – increased number of drug addicts. Many experts consider that there is a direct relationship between the growth of drug addiction and crime.

It should be noted that the problem of alcoholism in the U.S. is closely related to the unemployment. As a result of firing, a person feels himself inferior and starts drinking too much alcohol. Consequently, the person loses his skills and it is becoming much harder to find appropriate job. As a rule, alcoholism in the U.S. – is a pressing social problem that affects essentially all aspects of American society - the socio-political, economic and moral. The prevalence of alcoholism among the diseases is the fourth after cardiovascular disease, cancer and mental illness. 

According to James Jones (2008), describing the housing problem in the U.S., it should be noted that due to a number of historical, social and economic conditions America has one of the highest level of housing prices in the world. In other words, to buy a house, average U.S. citizen has to pay credit for thirty years. But, if he loses his job, he will not be able to cover a credit and keep house. As a result, in situation of high level of unemployment, more and more Americans have to sell their houses and move into apartments.

In this part of the essay I would like to recommend solutions for the social problems that are caused by unemployment. In order to limit them, there have to be implemented new ways and approaches to cut unemployment rates. I am convinced that unemployment issue is under the jurisdiction of the state and, in my opinion, competent management of this sphere will reduce the negative impact of all the above mentioned problems and also reduce social tension in society.

According to Brenda Sorensen (2010), leading economy experts consider that the main directions of state policy on employment and unemployment should be following:

Government programs aimed to stimulating growth in employment and vacancies appearance;

Programs, which are aimed at training and retraining of the workforce;

Programs, which are aimed at maintaining recruitment of labor (this is the direction of special importance in recent years);

State social insurance for unemployment.

Consequently, not all of the active policy measures are effective and can be criticized, because their impact on unemployment is difficult to determine. Problems that cause unemployment have to be taken into consideration and certain improvements will also be essential.

In my opinion, authorities should take urgent measures to solve unemployment problem. First of all, in each administrative center in every state should be organized public works for the citizens, who lost their permanent income. It can be said that this activity should include the organization of roads repair and construction and other infrastructure projects. However, these projects are capital-intensive and local budgets may not have enough funds for their realization. Although, I believe that public works can also include work on the cleaning of streets, landscaping, maintenance of public transport, etc. Secondly, employment service should provide the unemployed with funds to start their own business. As a rule many of the unemployed mind their own business, but do not have enough money for a start up. Of course, before providing the loan, employment service must ensure that the borrower’s business plan is competitive and meets the general requirements. Thirdly, I think that local authorities should also create retraining courses for people who lose their jobs. But, before this step, the government should create a list of priority vacancies for the country and help people to retrain and find job. I strongly believe that all these measures are in demand and will help to reduce social tensions in the society and contribute to general economic recovery. 

To sum it up, it should be noted that currently, in the U.S. unemployment rate is around 7 per cent (17 million people are unemployed). Increased inflow into the labor market of the economically active population, structural changes in the American economy, the evolution of qualifying, the occupational structure of the U.S. labor market, the accelerated introduction of robotics and automation, the intensive militarization of the U.S. economy - this is not a complete list of the major reasons, why unemployment in a large scale came to exist, along with a significant expansion of employment. 

It is essential to take into consideration all the problems connected with unemployment such as: the problem of poverty; the racial problem; the problem of crime; the problem of alcoholism; the housing problem. In my opinion, authorities should take following steps to reduce social tensions: in each administrative center in every state should be organized public works for the citizens, who lost their permanent income; employment service should provide the unemployed with funds to start their own business; local authorities should also create retraining courses for people who lose their jobs. Of course, all these measures are not fundamentally new, but as you know, everything new - is well forgotten old.

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