A Decreasing Employment Rate Does Not Mean Less Jobs

A Decreasing Employment Rate Does Not Mean Less Jobs

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As of 2012, the U.S. population has grown by 26 million people in the past decade. One can only assume that this will have some sort of impact on the decreasing employment rate (down 4.4% since 1990) that we are currently experiencing. However, this does not necessarily mean that we have a shortage of jobs. To understand how we are truly affected by certain issues such as this, we must first understand how statistics are calculated and what they really mean. As the world population grows, so does the number of immigrants to the United States. America is the “land of opportunity” in the eyes of the many, and this creates the perception that a person can come to the U.S. and immediately become successful. However, this is not always the case. Moving to an entirely new country requires an adaptation of culture – just the same as starting a new job and learning new skills. Often times immigrants may lack the knowledge and skills of a particular job and require extensive training in order to fully perform as expected. As the population of immigrants grows, so does the number of unemployed when a census is taken. Many times the media will also include broader measures of unemployment which include illegal immigrants in their estimates. This can cast an inaccurate light on the actual figures. We must also remember that many people still choose not to work, and combined with the growing number of immigrants (both legal and illegal), this will gradually reduce the calculated number of employed Americans.

We hear on the news nearly every day that the unemployment rate has increased and there is a shortage of jobs. This creates anxiety and many fear they will lose their job at any given moment or not be able to transition during a job search. Now it is time to take a step back and see the statistics for what they really are. As the U.S. population grows with legal/illegal immigrants, recent college graduates entering the workforce, and layoffs at a more increasing rate than ever before, it is safe to assume that just because the employment rate gets higher does not mean that there are less jobs than before. This just means that the availability of jobs cannot keep up with the growing U.S. population statistics. If you are experienced in your field and possess a long history of accomplishment, there is no need to worry so much. If you are an individual who lacks experience and education, or an immigrant with no acquired skills and qualifications, there may be a reason to worry. Therefore, we must figure out a way to create more opportunities for those who are just entering the workforce and find innovative ways to generate more jobs for an increasing population.

By Justin Olsen

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