March 6th, 2009
10:50 AM ET
14 years ago

White House: States to get $3.5 bln for job training, transition

WASHINGTON (CNN) – The White House reacted to February’s jobs loss report Friday with an announcement by Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis that the administration would be directing $3.5 billion to states to fund education and jobs counseling for unemployed Americans.

“Today we learned that our economy lost another 651,000 jobs in the month of February, bringing the unemployment rate to 8.1 percent. 4.4 million Americans have now lost their jobs since this recession began last year, and there are now nearly 3 million Americans who have been unemployed for more than six months.

This data does not just represent abstract statistics, but the struggles of millions of Americans who do not know how they will pay the bills, or pay the mortgage, or raise their families. They are the central focus of this Administration’s economic policies, and why we are moving swiftly and aggressively to jumpstart job creation and grow our economy once more.

As part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, President Obama and I have already moved to increase unemployment insurance benefits and to extend the duration of unemployment insurance. In addition, I am announcing today that the Labor Department is making available more than 3 and a half billion dollars to states for education, training and reemployment services.

We will continue to do whatever is necessary to break the destructive cycle of job loss in this country and put Americans back to work. That includes our plans to re-start lending for consumers and small businesses, help responsible homeowners pay their mortgages and re-finance their homes, and address the long-term economic challenges we face: the high cost of health care, our dependence on oil, and the state of our schools.

From the day this Administration began, we knew that solving the economic crisis we were presented with would not be easy and would not happen overnight. But the President and I believe strongly that this nation has both the resources and the will to meet this challenge and emerge stronger and more prosperous than before.”

President Obama traveled to Columbus, Ohio Friday to speak at the graduation ceremony for 25 police cadets whose jobs, the White House claims, were saved by the economic stimulus plan.

The February jobs report showed 651,000 jobs had been lost. The unemployment rate now stands at 8.1 percent, its highest level since December 1983. The new report now brings the six month total of jobs lost to 3.3 million which is larger than the population of Chicago, the third largest city in America.

Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (69 Responses)
  1. Brian Crooks

    Just wait for the conservatives to call job training socialism...

    March 6, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  2. Had It

    Quit issuing visas for se asians to come here and replace americans that already know how to do those jobs. Keep americans employed first.

    March 6, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  3. Proud American

    Great Idea...

    March 6, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  4. Glenda

    Corporations need to do THEIR part in fixing this mess. I expect both market segments to id a solution to their problem (CEO, Finance and Marketing 101). Accountability for Wall street and Banking resides with them. They need to id a way to restore their profitability and public trust. The government is implementing and addressing actions that protect the citizens’ wellbeing and out national interests.

    March 6, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  5. cruiserGT

    Okay... now they are acting like President Carter.

    Hello! Training folks for non-existent jobs is NOT going to help our economy. What a bunch of fools.

    March 6, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  6. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    Is that enough money?

    March 6, 2009 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  7. KC

    Job Training for transition to what jobs?

    March 6, 2009 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  8. Chipster

    8.1% – the highest unemployment level since the Reagan/Bush "supply-side" economic disaster.

    March 6, 2009 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  9. Capt. SNarKy

    Alright, I'll be the dink here, rant mode on:

    ", and there are now nearly 3 million Americans who have been unemployed for more than six months. "

    How in the hell do you stay unemployed for more than six months?
    Are these people only looking for work in their chosen profession?
    Wouldn't it sink in at some point that you are not going to make a lateral move, that you have to try elsewhere? For crying out loud, the McDonalds that I drive by on the way to my job has had a help wanted sign in the window for months.

    Livable wage? Hell, No! But it will put food on the table and maybe keep the lights on. As a kid, I remember my Dad working three jobs to make ends meet and put a roof over our heads. None of these jobs were full time, none paid insurance- but they heated our house and put food on the table.

    Rant mode off.

    March 6, 2009 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  10. Tom

    I am Dutch (this means Europe) but living in Africa. I see so many comments about "socialist" Europe and third world countries that I am really shocked about the Americans in general. I have worked in maybe 25 different countries so I think I can speak about this matter.

    My only conclusion is very simple. Except for your Armed Forces you are allready a third world country so stop those stupid comments for a change and start reading a book or educate yourselfs. Land of the brave and stupid.

    March 6, 2009 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  11. Kevin in Ohio

    I idn't know that Job Training was the answer..... wow, I guess the jobs will just magically appear! Pay attention to the root causes of the financial crisis, Obama, and maybe things will start working! Geez.

    March 6, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  12. Once you vote Black

    This is great because while the GOP is trying to figure out if they should poop out of their bottom or their top, Obama is helping people get jobs and keep their homes. Voters will remember this so Newt if you are thinking about running should should not talk about it until 2010. Perhaps by then Obama will have made a mistake. But for now you are in his positives zone.

    March 6, 2009 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  13. Independent chicago man age 25

    Great, so we will saturate the market with qualifed people, but then there won't be any jobs to put them. Well I guess it's a start.

    March 6, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  14. Jon in CA

    Hmmm I wonder why the stock market is getting flushed? Could it be run-away spending by Obama and the democrats??

    LOOK PEOPLE... we've seen the Democrats "More Money" approach fail miserably: Washington DC Public Schools... Highest per/student expeditures...WORST test results in the nation!

    Obama and the democrats are spending like drunken sailers and the stock market and our economy are crashing. All the blame leads to the White House.

    March 6, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  15. Michael

    Good, this is what McCain promised to do but to a lesser extent. McCain also promised to pay the unemployeed who need to be retrained a middle income wage while being retrained.

    March 6, 2009 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  16. P from the IE

    Gosh I hope this is true because where I live the un-employment level is now at 10% (Depression level) and my State of California is going to lay off thousands of teachers. That actually hurts business. The loss of sales tax alone! No jobs = dead retail, no eating out, no buying cars, and many will stop paying their mortgages due to no salary. If the money doesn't come soon we will hit 11% un-employment and California will tank. Send money soon!

    March 6, 2009 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  17. Jane

    Why does Obama have to have a teleprompter. He was so very, very, critical of Bush. Bush may have mangled the English language at timeS but he was real. Well, we know Obama cannot think for himself. This country needs change, change from Obama but really now are any of you surprised? "The Slobbering Love Affair The Media Had With Obama" book will explain it all. I would suggest every person go on line at and buy the book. It is half-price and it is well worth reading. You will not only be surprised, but, moreover, you will get just what the American people have done. IF WE COULD HAVE BUSH BACK IT WOULD BE A MIRACLE.

    March 6, 2009 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  18. The lonely Libertarian of Liverpool

    You know a person could make a better living Unemployed, than working currently? More health care, unemployment benefits above minimum wage, free college, Hmmmmmmmmmm
    Atlas Shrugged has arrived.

    March 6, 2009 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  19. welcome back

    comrades, welcome to the Union of North American Socialist Republics.

    March 6, 2009 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  20. Jackie in Dallas

    Job training and job counseling is something I think is essential to our economic recovery. I'm glad to see this focus, as it was sorely needed. Having spent quite a bit of time myself in and out of jobs since 2001 due to the telecom crash (although I am now gratefully employed!), this is EXACTLY the type of help our states need to deal with the current crisis.

    In the early 1800s, this country went from agrarian to industrial, in the early 1900s from blue-collar industrial to white collar industrial, and in the late 1900s from production industrial to service industrial. Our training progams have lagged behind. If we want to stay competitive in the global market, we need to rectify that.

    March 6, 2009 11:39 am at 11:39 am |

    Don`t take the money Texas Gov. Perry--- MAN UP !!!!-- Stand on your core beliefs and principals and your conservative Republican values. -- Take any part of those stimulus funds you so righteously stood against and it will send a message you and your values are for sale to the highest bidder.

    March 6, 2009 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  22. Kay

    When are they going to finally admit that we're in a depression??

    March 6, 2009 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  23. southerncousin

    Just go ahead and get that EFCA and see how much it soars. I notice that CNN has not reported that the beneficiaries of this and so much of the stimulus and budget frauds being perpetrated on this country is not reporting that the AFL-CIO is meeting in a luxurious Miami Beach Resort as this is written. I can't take vacation. Also, our VP Joe the Gaffer Biden reinforced his support of the business busting EFCA yesterday while making some stupid remarks in front of these freeloaders.

    March 6, 2009 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  24. karen-Phoenix

    Sometimes in order to get ahead we all have to go back and start over. It is painful going through a process of "cleaning house" but on the other side we WILL have a stronger, better and more caring United States of America!!! Solar, Wind, high efficiency cars!! National Health Care and a good public educational system!! Painful getting out but soooo rewarding at the end!!! We will be better, safer and smarter!!! Work with President Obama!!!

    March 6, 2009 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  25. Get Well Soon GOP

    Job training is great for those who can read, but what about the Republicans?

    March 6, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
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