The Unemployment Problems

English Essay on "The Unemployment Problems"

In most countries, unemployment is one of the most serious social and economic problems of the day. It exists in an alarming degree, not only in poor countries, but also in apparently prosperous lands like England and the United States of America. Just now it is not so bad as it was a few years ago in England; but even to-day, when trade is fairly good and the rearmament schemes have absorbed a number of the hitherto unemployed, there are still about two million (in a population of forty million) out of work. The number of the unemployed goes up and down as trade diminishes or improves; but unemployment still remains as a more or less serious problem.

There is no need to stress the serious sufferings of men and families who are out of work for long periods of time lack of food, decent housing, health, and all the pleasures of life; nor the injury a country as a whole suffers when so large a part of its population is idle and is a burden on the rest. Let us glance at the different ways in which the problem is being tackled.

At one time emigration was the chief remedy. People who could not get work at home were helped to emigrate to the Colonies, and vent across the seas to people Australia, New Zealand and Canada. But emigration on any large scale to these countries is no longer possible, as they have big populations of their own. Either work or support has now to be found for the wordless at home.

Private charity, administered by philanthropic societies, has done much to relieve the distress of families out of work by supplying them with money and food. But the problem is too big a one for private effort to deal with adequately.

So the State has had to step in; and to-day it supports families who are out of work on what is called the “dole”. The unemployed can now claim a certain allowance out of State funds, so long as they are genuinely out-of-work. This is sufficient to secure to them food and housing, and medical attention in time of sickness. This has saved thousands from starvation; but it has its disadvantages, living on the dole in idleness is not good for the character of any man. The honest workman feels degraded at having to live on chant), when all he wants is to earn an honest living by honest toil. And the effect on others is to make them idle and work-shy, and unwilling to lake work even when they can get it. So the problem is not solved, but only alleviated.

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