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. no corporate politics

    Job training? People didn't just become untrained. They were layed off. They would have been layed off even if they were better trained!

    Job Counseling? "um, dude, I am so sorry there are no jobs" "Next!"

    article: "data does not just represent abstract statistics" Don't worry. Obama will get us back on abstraction so that we feel better.

    March 6, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  2. gary, gpp

    @ A PROUD TEXAN

    Are you joking? I can't tell. I hope so.

    March 6, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  3. Jar

    PROUD TEXAN: yeehaw u tell 'em pat'naw! Nevamind that your state has the highest proportion of food stamp recipients in the nation (more than 3 million). We'll let a ignorant, cowboy determine economic policies for the country, nevermind those ejumucated economists!

    March 6, 2009 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  4. dotjet

    I have a question for "southerncousin" & "A Proud Texan"; since you keep articulating your opposition to every single proposal that comes from the administration & congress to help the economy:

    What do YOU suggest that we do? How will your suggestions help the economy?

    In other words .. . MAN UP! Become part of the solution, not just another obstructionist.

    March 6, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  5. Matthew, Houston, TX

    That's right, a proud texan, man up Gov. Perry and screw the people who are out of work. Make those freeloaders go from unemployment to welfare to homelessness. Punish those no good lazy people who had the audacity to be laid off. Punish those people who can't find a job and don't know where their next meal is coming from.

    March 6, 2009 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  6. disgusted

    southerncousin, I guess the idea that the idea that people that work should actually make a livable wage is too much for you to wrap your head around. The idea that someone that runs a company thinks 500 times harder and is 500 times mores valuable than a person who does actual labor makes perfect sense to you right?

    March 6, 2009 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  7. still hoping

    So when does this become the democratic congress and obama's problem? They're so busy trying to place blame and the economy keeps getting worse based on obama's decisions.

    Where is GWB when you need him? Anyone is better than obama!

    March 6, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  8. no corporate politics

    @ jar "yeehaw u tell 'em pat'naw"

    What would you call someone who makes fun of the way someone else talks or where they come from?

    Lies, slander, email hacks, wishing people dead (actual posts here) – anything goes in the New Obama Fanclub.

    This is from a lifelong liberal who is not comfortable with this at all.

    March 6, 2009 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  9. KFR

    When Bush left office people were being laid off right and left, sure it has increased but I can tell you one thing I would not want to be a President who was elected into this mess. Why do you people research before you judge.

    March 6, 2009 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  10. Tracey

    Karen Arizona I couldn't agree more, you go girl.

    March 6, 2009 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  11. gary, gpp

    @ Jar

    Thanks for a good laugh !

    March 6, 2009 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  12. Scott, Tucson

    “Today we learned that our economy lost another 651,000 jobs in the month of February" That's February 09 to the Obama fans, you can't blame this one on Bush. This is simply a reaction to Obama winning the election and Wall Street reaction to his policies which so far is sadly lacking.

    March 6, 2009 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  13. dumbocrat alert

    the Obama regime, the 2nd coming of Jimmy Carter

    March 6, 2009 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  14. Scott M

    bln as the abbreviation for billion? Does CNN.com even have an editior on staff?

    March 6, 2009 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  15. Get Well Soon GOP

    Southercousin I am sure you were happy before workers had unions. You long for the good old days of the south where workers were black slaves.

    March 6, 2009 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  16. Finally!

    @ Karen, Phoenix, who wrote:

    "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!!!"

    What planet are you living on????? Is there any vacancy?

    You surely must realize what is on the "other side", right? Here's a clue... NOTHING that you wrote.

    March 6, 2009 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  17. Steph

    Well said dotjet!

    March 6, 2009 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  18. Larry

    Problem? Throw money at it !!!!!That should fix it !!!! No ?well just throw some more money at it then,that should fix it !!NO?well

    March 6, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  19. Hammer

    Obama made history once. Now he is leading this country to another historical event, the collapse of the biggest economical power in the world. Congratulations!

    March 6, 2009 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  20. Larry

    Problem? Throw money at it !That should fix it !No ?well just throw some more money at it then,that should fix it !!NO?well.............

    March 6, 2009 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  21. Reality 101

    @ no corporate politics

    People get laid off because they are not useful. The skills they have are not worth what a company is paying them. They don't just lay off people randomly. The company will only keep people that can do all the functions they need - instead of keeping one person who can do this and one person who can do that.

    Its cheaper for them to have 1 person that can do everything.

    Job training will allow people to acquire more high-value skills. So that when they get a new job the can be competitive in the job market when it turns around. The job training will also allow people to get training in industries that are growing instead of ones that are slowly disappearing.

    Plus employment gaps are very unattractive on a resume - especially if you were fired or laid off. Employers want to see that you were improving yourself in some way during your "time off."

    March 6, 2009 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  22. Dawn

    Job training is good, my husband was a steelworker, but the jobs were few and far between, so he got a grant to learn to drive rigs and now he has a CDL. There is some people,[not to be insulting] could be working at a job, but cannot do the job that is starting, so take the training.

    March 6, 2009 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  23. Dawn

    Job training is good, my husband was a steelworker, but the jobs were few and far between, so he got a grant to learn to drive rigs and now he has a CDL. There is some people,[not to be insulting] could be working at a job, but cannot do the job that is starting, so take the training.

    March 6, 2009 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  24. Dawn

    Job training is good, my husband was a steelworker, but the jobs were few and far between, so he got a grant to learn to drive rigs and now he has a CDL. There is some people,[not to be insulting] could be working at a job, but cannot do the job that is starting, so take the training.

    March 6, 2009 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  25. southerncousin

    disgusted@the libs, George Soros and the usual culprits have talked down the economy as they do every presidential election, creating the fear and the panic. They just did not know when to stop. I work, can't afford a vacation in Miami Beach or at all. How much taxpayer money is paying for that? We know it cost several thousand dollars for Joe the Gaffer to go down there and suck up to the union bosses.

    March 6, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
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