There are about 6 million people classified by the Bureau of Labor Statistics as the long-term unemployed, and another million classified as "discouraged workers." (See http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm). And, of course, the larger unemployment and under-employment problem is even more immense, with somewhere between 14 and 25 million people without full-time jobs (depending on which measurements are used).
We at WPA Today (www.wpatoday.org) believe there is a better way to help the long-term unemployed. Instead of calling them "lazy," or cutting off their unemployment benefits after some arbitrary time period, or waiting for the private sector to rescue them at some unknown future time, or simply ignoring them as if they are no longer valuable to the country, we believe that a nationwide public works program is needed. We believe that such a program would give the long-term unemployed hope, would help preserve our country's environment and heritage, would enhance our nation's infrastructure, and would be beneficial to the private sector (see our website for more details).
If you agree that there is a better way to help our fellow Americans, who have been unemployed for 6 months, a year, or more, then please sign our petition.