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Government Programs That Discriminate in the Workplace

Updated on July 24, 2012

So, there are 14 million Americans out of work, probably more, because the numbers do not count those who are not looking or no longer getting unemployment.

The thing that really aggravates the situation is the US government programs that promote those on AFDC, WOTC, TANF, SNAP, or WTW. If you enter into a Walmart or many other businesses, you will see employees that that are, shall we say, not the creme of the crop. Most employers would never hire them or even consider them but for the government programs that give numerous tax breaks or pay half their wage. That is the raw truth. A person who tried to get a job and encounters a series of questions online about whether they have received AFDC or other, and answers NO to them ( basically, a person who has never got welfare assistance in the past year or so), will NOT get the job that they are obviously qualified for.

That is discrimination. Legal, government authorized, discrimination. Oh, I get the reason and it is a noble concept that is fine when the unemployment is not more than 4%, but when it is 9-12%, these programs should be suspended.

WOTC (Work Opportunity Tax Credit) has nine target groups that participating employers can use to discriminate with. They are:

1. Qualified recipients of Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF), 2) Veterans receiving Food Stamps or qualified veterans with a service connected disability who have a hiring date which is not more than one year after having been discharged or released from active duty OR have periods of unemployment during the one year period ending on the hiring date that equal or exceed six months, 3) Ex-felons hired no later than one year after conviction or release from prison, 4) Designated Community Resident – an individual who has attained ages 18 but not 40 on the hiring date who reside in an Empowerment Zone, Renewal Community, or Rural Renewal County, 5) Vocational rehabilitation referrals, 6) Summer youth ages 16 through 17 who reside in an Empowerment Zone, Enterprise Community, or Renewal Community, 7) Food Stamp recipients ages 18 but not 40 on the hiring date, 8) recipients of Supplemental Security Income (SSI), 9) Long-term family assistance recipients.

WOTC program will give employers anywhere from $6000 to $9,000 tax credit for hiring one of these persons working at $8 hr for at least 400 hrs (2.5 mos). So, a person who is not qualified for a job skill-wise, but is on AFDC, has much more of a chance of getting the job than a person who is not but has the skills. A person earns $3200 in 400 hrs. Yet, the program will pay $6000 in tax breaks to an employer as an incentive to hire the welfare person.

No wonder those not on welfare can never get work at places at Walmart or other large companies. In essence, the employer does not pay the wages AND actually makes thousands for hiring them! If that is not discrimination under the disguise of "equal opportunity", I have no idea what it is. The longer the employee works in the program, the more tax break the employer gets up to $9000.

Because of these series of programs, the government actually promotes welfare because you need to get it to get the candidate edge in the hiring process. Naturally, employers will use these programs to the best of their interest. Many large firms use them for low level jobs. Yet, in this economic climate, there are many educated people with skills that just want to pay bills and go to K-mart, Walgreens, Target and others and because they are not on welfare, they will NOT get the job, most likely. Some real loser will.


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