A look at employment, or lack thereof

I caught up on my neglected RSS feeds and ran across some interesting information on Michigan employment. If you're not aware what's been happening in Michigan for the past half-decade, people have been losing jobs left and right. In October alone, unemployment rose 9.3%. GM is grinding production to a halt. People are moving away, especially out of Detroit. But I get the sense that there's light at the end of this tunnel.

The first interesting thing I came across was a Detroit Free Press article about how public projects in Michigan could put hundreds of thousands of people back to work. These projects are ready to go, but they need funding. The article began:
Michigan has nearly 500 public works projects considered “shovel ready” that could start within 90 days of making money available for them, according to a national survey in support of boosting the economy through massive infrastructure spending.

Nationwide, more than 3,600 road, bridge, water and sewer projects totaling $15 billion would generate 532,794 jobs, the American Public Works Association announced this afternoon.
532,794 jobs?

That could really offset all of these painful cuts and unemployment increases. There are ways Michigan can make it out of this, but it needs some money. So, perhaps the auto bridge loans aren't what we need, rather a comprehensive infrastructure plan to relieve Michigan's employment woes. Michigan really needs both, but no one's going to get that kind of cake and get to eat it, too.

The other interesting link I found (which I could've used about 8 months ago) was http://www.michigan.gov/jobs. I've got a feeling we'll be seeing a lot more resources similar to this appearing nationwide, along with personal finance and credit resources (I hope!) My hope is that libraries take the lead role on this. My hope is that libraries come out of this economic nightmare as significant solutions to the problem.

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