March Unemployment A ‘Short-Lived’ Gain

Today’s Bureau of Labor Statistics’ announcement of 162,000 new jobs during the month of March is good news. But a recovery is not within sight. The 9.7 unemployment rate remained unchanged thanks to the recent hiring of 48,000 workers for the 2010 census – temporary positions that’ll soon be gone just as quick as they came.

The U.S. Census Bureau says it expects to fill up to 750,000 new jobs before the end of May in order to count all U.S. residents, a procedure which only happens once every ten years. Officials say most of those workers will be spending an average of 19 hours a week walking door to door collecting household information. The positions are temporary, which means most workers will be resuming their search for employment by the summer.

“It’s always encouraging to see more people working. But this burst will be short-lived,” says IAM International President Tom Buffenbarger. “By June, we’ll be staring at a huge wave of jobless workers returning to the unemployment lines.

“Politicians will tout these new jobs as a sign of a ‘recovery.’ But this country will need to add more than 200-thousand good paying, long-term jobs a month for three years or more to return to full employment. America is in desperate need of bold, robust jobs legislation. That message is still not quite hitting home to folks in Washington.”