As unemployment becomes worse, community-based organizations are noticing a change in their clientele. Shelters are seeing clients who are more representative of the newly unemployed. Here's what one non-profit, Partnering for Change, reported on their blog just last week:This of course has been going on for a while. During the height of the H-1b craze in 2003, Oregon and Washington were near the top of US state in terms of families at serious risk of not having enough food. A friend of mine talked to the manager of one of the larger private charities in Oregon who saidthat he had experienced a dramatic shift in composition of who needed his services. I think we are seeing what starts on the West Coast moving into the rest of the country a few years later.
In recent months we've noticed a change in the needs of our program feeding homeless children. I've mentioned, there are over 11,000 elementary age children in Orange County, CA who are homeless. They are homeless for different reasons. But here's a scenario you wouldn't think would take place:
Two able body parents in their early 30's. He has a 4 year college degree in marketing, she went to a technical school in information technology. Both are smart with a willingness to work. They have 3 kids, ages 8, 5 and 2. But guess what, they are both unemployed....for 9 months now.
Several of the comments in the article on White Collar homelessness deal with immigration. What I see is a fundamental problem:we are dealing with a situation in which the major economic authorities have become so politicized that they have no more intellectual credibility than a late night real estate infomercial. The reporting of the facts in this situation are left to bloggers and institutions that have minimal funding or voice.
In a lot of ways, the situation really could get worse for American citizens than the Great Depression I. During the Great Depression I, immigration restriction was already largely in place-which is one reason why stimulus measures could at least contain the race to the bottom a little bit. During Great Depression II, the United States lacks even intellectually honest political or intellectual leadership to analyze the situation.