WASHINGTON-With Virginia’s August unemployment figures showing the second increase this year, two Virginia members of Congress are taking distinctly different approaches to creating jobs and getting the economy back on track.
Yesterday, Rep. Eric Cantor joined several Republican congressional leaders in sending a letter to the Federal Reserve Bank asking Chairman Ben Bernanke to forgo any stimulus measures the Fed could take to reduce unemployment. The Board of the Federal Reserve will be meeting this week to determine the proper course of action to address high unemployment rates.
“Rep. Cantor is not helping the unemployed in his district and seems to be actively obfuscating others from doing anything to create jobs and stimulate the economy. During the debt ceiling debate, we got to see just how far Rep. Cantor would go to obstruct. Rep. Cantor calling on the Federal Reserve to sit on their hands is simply more of the same behavior we have come to expect,” said Candace Graham, Rep. Cantor’s constituent and a member of the Virginia Organizing Budget and Revenue Committee.
Meanwhile, Rep. James Moran announced that he is co-sponsoring legislation, the Fair Employment Opportunity Act, which would ban hiring discrimination against unemployed job seekers. The legislation is a result of months of advocacy as part of a campaign to ban hiring discrimination. Today, US Action and other groups delivered 250,000 petition signatures, to the 46 members of Congress who are co-sponsoring the Fair Employment Opportunity Act.
The legislation is, in part, the result of a groundbreaking study published by the National Employment Law Project which showed that employers of all sizes in every region of the country are using recruitment and hiring policies that expressly deny employment to the unemployed – simply because they are not working.
“Hiring discrimination affects countless Virginians and adds insult to injury for the unemployed. Virginia Organizing commends Rep. Moran for listening to his constituents who are struggling and for working hard to do something about it,” said Sandra Cook, Virginia Organizing Chairperson.
Virginia Organizing is a statewide grassroots organization that brings people together to create a more just Virginia.