Monday, January 28, 2013

Progress Illinois: Youth Unemployment Summit Highlights Illinois Teens' Urgent Need For Jobs

I recently found this article from Progress Illinois. There was a 19 person panel consisting of various politicians from the city, county, and state levels last Thursday hosted by the Chicago Urban League. The youth of Chicago gave testimony of their difficulty in finding a job:
Illinois’ teen unemployment rate is among the highest in the country and during a panel on Thursday at the Chicago Urban League, local elected officials came face-to-face with Chicago’s unemployed youth.

“Not being able to provide for your kid or help your family is an awful feeling, I feel like nothing, but I don’t have opportunities to work,” said Dwillie Bush, 18, during the panel. A senior at Banner Academy South High School in the far South Side neighborhood of Jeffrey Manor, Bush is father to a four-month-old boy and lives with his single mother and four siblings in Englewood.

“Point blank, I need a job,” he said.

In front of a 19-person panel that featured a collection of aldermen, commissioners and legislative representatives, more than 15 teenagers gave testimony to the struggles of unemployment in Chicagoland. Thursday’s panelists were also presented with a recent report explaining how teens, particularly low-income and minority teens, have been excluded from the labor market and the negative economic impact Illinois has seen as a result.

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