According to an article at AFP, President Obama and the White House have created a “Council on Automotive Communities and Workers,” which will recommend policies to help auto workers who have been hit by a tidal wave of automaker bankruptcies and job losses .
The article said:
“After decades of industry decline, workers have recently been buffeted by plant closures, slumping car sales and production plant sell-offs. According to the government’s own estimates, 400,000 jobs have been lost in the industry. Big names like General Motors and Chrysler have been brought to their knees, forced to lend tens of billions from the government to keep afloat.”
The job losses and automaker bankruptcies have added to the bulging unemployment numbers that we’re experiencing, nationwide and right here in Dallas. Hopefully this council will create a viable plan to retrain autoworkers and expand unemployment benefits in a way that will prevent them from falling through the cracks.
Right now what we’re seeing are autoworkers facing job losses, minuscule unemployment benefit checks and eventually foreclosure and bankruptcy . Many of these workers now facing job losses had become accustomed to high salaries that are uncommon for comparable work in today’s job market.
Most of them haven’t and won’t find jobs with comparable salaries which will create an environment where their current lifestyles are unaffordable. For these former automakers, lower salaries could mean losing their homes to foreclosure and/or needing to file bankruptcy to discharge debt they can no longer afford to pay. They council needs to put into place programs specifically designed for the circumstances that these workers are facing.