How Welfare Can Get You Employment
It is interesting how both presidential candidates have solutions to solving the unemployment problem in the USA. While there many pieces to this puzzle in order to bring it back down to 3-4%, or pre-2009 levels, one solution both will use presents problems.
If you have been working steadily, you would not know the conundrum, but to 10-15% of the population, they have encountered it.
The encounter is when, as a last resort, the job applicant applies for a low level job, maybe $8-9 hr.job at Walgreens, Rite-Aid, Walmart and many other places online. Besides the often time consuming application process and all the usual things that may prohibit or help you get the job, at the end, somewhere, there are series of questions all about whether you receive any welfare, such as, AFDC, WIC, WITA, food stamps and more, in the past 30-90 days. But the kicker question is, "Are You Homeless"?.
The job applicant is baffled about why are the questions remotely related to the job of cashier, or service worker or stock. They seem so intrusive. To the applicant, degrading having to admit they are on welfare with a college degree from years ago.
The reason for the questions is to determine how much can the employer gain from hiring you if you are or have been on welfare or even, incredibility, homeless, living under a bridge. You see, being on welfare or homeless, does give you a better chance of getting those jobs because the employer will get a huge tax benefit in thousands of dollars and\or will only have to pay a portion of your meager wage from their pocket, while the government pays the rest.
Yes, it is one of many incentives government has for business to hire those on welfare, to help those at the bottom. It's a noble idea but for the millions of people who are NOT quite there yet. Not quite needing welfare because they are living off bank savings or retirement or make enough to avoid it. So, the Walmart's, Walgreen's and others, tend to hire those that give their business a break. Its not to say these places will not hire you if you are not on welfare, skills are important, but, this incentive is just another type of discrimination, really, in addition to all of the others, like, "must be currently employed", "bi-lingual preferred", "Spanish speaking only". Of course, employers use age, gender all the time to weed out applicants because there are so many.
It is a crazy time for those unemployed. Even low level jobs are no longer "easy" to get.