Jobs Numbers Show More Needs to be Done to Get Americans Back to Work

Washington, DC — The Campaign for America’s Future’s co-director Robert Borosage said that today’s jobs numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics of 120,000 new jobs shows that while we are heading in the right direction, much more needs to be done to assure a full recovery that includes Americans getting back to work at jobs that pay a living wage. He urged investing in transportation infrastructure.

Statement from Robert L. Borosage co-Director of the Campaign for America’s Future:

“The March jobs report should set off alarm bells. Yes, the economy continues to grow which is a good thing. But growth at this rate barely keeps pace with new people coming into the labor market. Some 24 million people are still in need of full-time work. Incomes are not keeping pace with rising costs.

“Washington should be focused on jobs, not cuts. Yes, the stock market is up, corporate profits are up, CEO pay is soaring. But wages are losing ground, housing values continue to sink, and foreclosures are rising. The recovery has come for the few, but not for most Americans. And with youth unemployment at 25%, the young are graduating from school into the worst jobs market since the Great Depression.

“Federal Reserve Chair Ben Bernanke was right last week when he said the economy does not have the foundation for growth at a rate that we want – and these disappointing jobs numbers illustrate that. We need action now; instead we see a Republican Congress intent on stifling the little recovery we have. With interest rates near record lows, the construction industry on its back, and our decrepit infrastructure increasingly costly, we should be launching a major project to rebuild America and put people to work. Instead, the Republican Congress can’t even pass a modest transportation construction bill. With young people idled at the beginning of their work lives, we need direct government programs – a jobs corps, a green corps, an urban corps – to put them to work.

“Washington seems dangerously close to repeating the mistakes of 1937, moving prematurely to reduce deficits and constrict monetary policy, when the economy has not yet gained sufficient momentum to continue to grow. In 1937 that folly pushed the economy back into recession. In today’s Europe, austerity has had the same effect. We should not ignore the lessons of history and experience.”